Teen entrepreneur’s drone advertising business taking off - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Teen entrepreneur’s drone advertising business taking off

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A pilot for DroneCast operates a drone on the Las Vegas Strip during a demonstration on Thursday, July 10. (Les Krifaton/FOX5) A pilot for DroneCast operates a drone on the Las Vegas Strip during a demonstration on Thursday, July 10. (Les Krifaton/FOX5)
LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -

A young entrepreneur from Philadelphia has a vision of drones flying up and down the Las Vegas Strip. The unmanned aircraft would fly advertising banners.

Unfortunately for him, it's a vision not currently shared by the FAA.

The FAA considers commercially flown unmanned drone flights illegal.

Raj Singh, 19, had a big dream that has become reality. After watching a TV report last fall about Amazon's plan to one day use drones to deliver orders, Singh got an idea.

Today, Singh's company, DroneCast, is flying high.

"We have 15 employees and I just hired a president who used to work at Merrill Lynch, used to be an executive at Merrill Lynch. Now we have him at DroneCast," Singh said.

Singh held a demonstration on the Strip on Thursday, flying a drone.

The FAA would consider that demonstration illegal. Not particularly because of the flight, but because of the commercial angle.

"We are not violating any laws. There are policies in place that are not enforceable because they are not laws," Singh said.

According to the FAA Modernization Act of 2012, anyone who wishes to operate unmanned aircraft is subject to FAA regulation. Singh's legal team argues his company is not violating FAA regulations.

"They basically just say fly under 400 feet, five miles from airports," Singh said.

Singh's drones have been used at concerts, flying banners 40 feet in the air. He charges $50,000 per appearance.

The teen said that if the FAA does impose regulations, he will comply.

"If the FAA comes out and says you got to do this or this, we'll comply. We want to show everybody that drones can be used responsibly, and we're going to set that standard," he said.

Singh estimates DroneCast will generate $1.5 million in revenue this year.

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