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Investment banks using drone technology to scout out potential acquisitions

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Wall Street is taking advantage of “outsider information.” It’s flying drones to help clients get a better idea of the companies they’re interested in bidding on.

According to NBC News, Goldman Sachs is just one of a number of investment banks touring ports, railroads, warehouses, and big-box retail locations with drones to help buyers look for new things to acquire.

As it did with many companies, the coronavirus forced the cancellation of in-person meetings at Goldman Sachs. But buyers still want to see what they’re purchasing. And according to Stephan Feldgoise, the firm’s global co-head of mergers and acquisitions, bankers are bullish on drones.

“We have been selling asset-based businesses all over the world using drones for site visits and fly-overs,” Feldgoise said. “It gives buyers the confidence because when you are buying a business, you want to see, touch, and feel what you are buying.”

Investment banks aren’t typically places that enthusiastically embrace the latest technology. But the pandemic has made these eyes-in-the-skies a kind of angel investor for the mergers and acquisition crowd.

Half of all business travel may never return

According to Feldgoise, there was no in-person interaction in more than 95% of Goldman’s recent transactions. Drone technology is likely to become an established trend.

Bill Gates suggests more than half of all business travel may never return. So, the use of remote technology is likely to have a lasting impact on travel needs at Wall Street firms.

There might also be a serious business opportunity for underemployed drone pilots.

According to NBC News, bankers typically hire videographers who charge $10,000 and up for slickly produced drone videos.

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