Airbus and International SOS sign MOU on drone cargo delivery systems

July 18, 2018 Photo(s): By Airbus
Left to right: Dirk Hoke, CEO of Airbus Defence and Space, and Arnaud Vaissié, CEO of International SOS.

Airbus and International SOS, the world's leading medical and security risk services company, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) today to jointly study the viability of using aircraft or unmanned systems to deliver medical cargo and supplies.

Under the agreement, Airbus will help to define and install reliable aircraft or unmanned aerial medical cargo deliveries as part of International SOS MedSupply services. MedSupply deploys medical supplies, specialist medical care and equipment to meet the requirements of preventive health programme or in support of a medical emergency in urban as well as unfamiliar and remote locations. The studies will look into both urban to rural and ship to shore deliveries.

Airbus and International SOS will thus collaborate on safe, secure and enterprise drone delivery for hub to hub distribution of medical cargo, compliant with local regulatory bodies, as International SOS have global operations worldwide in emergency evacuation or medical resupplying.

"We hope to develop a viable business partnership where we can assist International SOS with unmanned medical cargo delivery. This means using our cutting edge technology to potentially save lives, and transform the medical and travel security industry," said Dirk Hoke, Chief Executive Officer, Airbus Defence and Space.

Arnaud Vaissié, CEO, Chairman and Co-Founder of International SOS, said: "Bringing together the Airbus expertise in securing aerial deliveries, and our global infrastructure assisting clients worldwide, is a clear move towards a greater efficiency. We are always striving to provide our clients with excellent customer service and this innovative venture will enable us to look into furthering our capabilities and enhancing our service."

Potential medical cargo delivery pilot cases are being explored in Singapore and Indonesia, and Airbus and International SOS will work with the local civil aviation and maritime authorities in both countries to develop these capabilities. If successful, this could be extended to International SOS operations globally.

Other potential areas of cooperation under the MOU include support for mobile hospitals, space and satellite services.