Crowdfunded Selfie Drone Zano Maker Will Liquidate Instead

Europe’s most successful Kickstarter campaign is no more

Zano drones promised a beautiful, ephemeral moment. The palm-sized drones, controlled by a smartphone app, were supposed to be the selfie-stick-without-a-stick, a drone based solution to a minor problem no one really had. It was still a delight, and when the project closed in January this year, 12,075 backers pledged £2,335,119 (or $3,556,386) to it. Now, Zano makers Torque Group Limited are pursuing a “creditor’s voluntary liquidation,” which leaves the company dead and the already-in-production Zano drones with an uncertain future.

We covered the project when it launched in December, writing at the time that the $220 drones would respond to gesture commands, and enter the drone market as one of the cheaper, camera-carrying options. It promised so much fun in such a little device.

As recently as October 15th, the team announced they were capable of shipping 200 Zano drones a day. Torque’s official statement is locked for backers only, but the BBC reports that it included this line: “Having explored all options known to us, and after seeking professional advice, we have made the difficult decision to pursue a creditors’ voluntary liquidation.” Project backers looking for a refund may not ultimately get one. Kickstarter instead requires that project creators “bring the project to the best possible conclusion” for their backers.

BBC

Kelsey D. Atherton
Kelsey D. Atherton

Kelsey D. Atherton is a defense technology journalist based in Albuquerque, New Mexico. His work on drones, lethal AI, and nuclear weapons has appeared in Slate, The New York Times, Foreign Policy, and elsewhere.