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The 12 Best Drone Stocks To Buy For May 2024!

best drone stocks

Drone technology is completely changing how our world operates, and many investors are looking to capitalize on this booming trend. So what are the best drone stocks to buy on the stock market? Keep reading to find out.

Best Drone Stocks To Buy

AeroVironment (NASDAQ: AVAV)

AeroVironment is a growing defense contractor focusing on unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). The company has contracts with the Department of Defense to build military drones, missile systems, and satellite technologies.

With commercial drone services also available, AeroVironment has much-needed diversity in its portfolio. AeroVironment has focused mainly on small drones so far and is committed to expanding its services through more sophisticated unmanned aircraft systems.

Always looking to innovate, AeroVironment is looking to use drones that effectively function as missiles. AeroVironment’s most recent earnings report declared revenues of $132.6 million for the fourth quarter.

 

best drone stocks

 

A record $445.7 million for the entire fiscal year 2022 resulted from increased service revenue and recent acquisitions. This more than offset sales decreases in several product sectors.

Although the AV had supply chain issues and a tight labor market during the quarter, various indicators indicate growing demand and a generally better future.

First, contract decision-making has accelerated since the federal government enacted its fiscal 2022 omnibus spending package in March. This trend will continue until the end of September.

At the same time, the conflict in Ukraine has raised awareness of its portfolio of cutting-edge products, notably the incredibly useful Switchblade tactical missile system. As a result, AV expects to see a rise in order volume in the future.

This company has enormous potential, and investors expect dramatic growth in the near future. Keep an eye on this stock if you are interested in drones. 

Boeing (NYSE: BA)

In addition to making commercial airplanes and military aircraft, Boeing also has a presence in the drone market. Although drones are a relatively minor source of its income, the company remains an essential player in the industry.

Boeing is over a century old and one of the world’s most respected aviation companies. It has long-held contracts with the U.S. military to develop tactical solutions. Recently, Boeing has focused more on Insitu, its drone subsidiary company.

Its most notable UAV is the ScanEagle, used for reconnaissance missions. In June of 2021, news broke that a Boeing MQ-25 Stingray drone refueled a Navy fighter jet in mid-air for the first time.

The company recently showed off surveillance drones that would be used to monitor remote areas of the Arctic, showing the versatility of Boeing’s drone technology. 

best drone stocks

These recent demonstrations showed the world just how much potential drones have in military combat and could increase demand for them moving forward. 

The company also recently announced that it will start a drone assembly operation in Queensland, Australia, where it has already completed test flights. Boeing stock has been on a wild ride over the past few years and still sees a lot of up and down motion.

Despite all the negative press surrounding Boeing, it is important to remember that the company produced $14.1 billion EBITDA and $13.7 billion in free cash flow in 2018. This was the year before the 737 MAX was grounded.

Given that Boeing’s market capitalization is now under $81 billion, there is considerable upside potential if it can achieve those EBITDA and FCF levels in the coming years.

In addition, Boeing’s drone business is a real bright spot for them, and government contracts are likely to remain steady.

Best Drone Manufacturing Stocks

EHang Holdings (NASDAQ: EH)

Unmanned drones can potentially be used for passenger flights at some point in the future. EHang Holdings is a Chinese drone company working to make this a reality.

The company initially showed off its drone technology online in 2018, envisioning its passenger drones being part of smart cities worldwide. Drones could be used for transportation, shipping, firefighting, tourism, and so much more.

In 2020, the Civil Aviation Administration in China approved EHang’s drones for commercial passenger use. As a result, Japan pre-ordered 50 drones for potential future air taxi use. Passenger drones might be closer to reality now than anyone had anticipated. 

best drone stocks

To expand UAM operations, such as maintenance, repair, overhaul, and training, EHang and top Malaysian aviation corporation AEROTREE Group entered a strategic agreement in March 2022.

AEROTREE placed a pre-order for 50 EHang 216 series units. One EHang 216 unit had already been bought by AEROTREE from the company before this pre-order.

EHang stock has been trending downward for several months, as investors still seem wary of the company’s financials. Being a new company will take EHang some time to become profitable. 

There’s still massive potential for EHang, and the stock could be a good choice for investors willing to take a risk. Now could be the right time to buy, as the stock is still down. 

Joby Aviation (NYSE: JOBY)

Another passenger drone stock that has been making waves recently is Joby Aviation. The company is based in California and has offices in Washington D.C. and Germany, going public at the end of 2020 through a SPAC

It collaborated with NASA on-flight technology and received airworthiness certification from the US Air Force. Joby Aviation also captured investors’ attention when it acquired Uber’s Elevate division, developing passenger ride-sharing vehicles. 

The company has been testing its prototypes since 2017. Of all the electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) vehicles currently in testing, this one seems likely to make it to market the fastest. 

best drone stocks

Joby has $1.2 billion in cash and short-term investments at the end of the second quarter of 2023 to fund operations. Net cash spent for operational purposes and acquisitions of goods and services came to $77 million in the second quarter.

And with its operation, Joby recently gained part 135 certification from the FAA earlier than anticipated. The procedure was supposed to be finished by the second half of 2022.

Along with a Type Certificate and a Production Certificate, Joby needs the Part 135 Air Carrier Certificate from the FAA. These are required for the company to operate its ground-breaking eVTOL aircraft as an air taxi service across the United States.

Joby Aviation stock is affordable now, but if its drones make it to market, it could dramatically increase in price. This stock has been very volatile over the past few months, so investors will want to be cautious when buying in.

Parrot SA (OTC: PAOTF)

Parrot is a French company that makes some of the world’s most popular hobby drones. While military drones receive a large amount of attention, there’s also a vast market for hobbyists. Many people use drones to capture fantastic photography or to learn how to fly.

However, Parrot’s most recent drone, the ANAFI USA, is designed for professional applications like firefighting and security. These innovative new services could benefit companies in many different industries.

Parrot can appeal to much broader markets and potentially draw in more money with this new release. Still priced under $5, Parrot stock may still exhibit some volatility. However, drones are a growing market, and Parrot is a company with huge potential for the future.

best drone stocks

In its most recent financial report, the Parrot Group reported consolidated revenues of €15.78 million in the second quarter of 2023, an increase of 3% yearly.

Amid rising demand, the Group has been focusing solely on developing, developing, and marketing professional civil drone solutions that integrate microdrones and image analysis software.

Best Drone Delivery Stocks

Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN)

Amazon is well-known as one of the world’s largest tech companies. What started as an online retailer has become a multi-faceted business with web services, video streaming, and much more.

The company has a substantial global delivery operation, so it’s no surprise that it’s been considering unmanned aircraft as a delivery solution. It started testing its Amazon Prime Air delivery drones back in 2019.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has finalized rules that look very promising for Amazon and its fleet of drones. Small drones are now permitted to fly without the special waivers that were previously required.

In fact, the first US drone delivery by Amazon will take place in California. According to the news, competitors Walmart and Google/Alphabet Inc. have previously tested and used drone delivery.

best drone stocks

The announcement also comes nearly ten years after Amazon initially said it would use drones for delivery. Amazon began using drones for delivery nine years ago in England, and two years ago the FAA approved their use in the United States.

When making one of these deliveries, the drone will fly to the predetermined spot, land in the customer’s backyard, and then hover there safely. After then, it will securely release the cargo and return to its original height.

Amazon also recently disclosed the development of an indoor drone camera called Ring Always Home. The camera will allow users to monitor their properties when they are away from home without having to install fixed cameras. 

As a whole, Amazon has been incredibly strong, seeing over 59% growth over the last five years. Amazon shares have a high price tag, so it’s not a suitable investment for everyone.

However, if you can afford it, there’s a strong possibility Amazon will only continue growing.

Alphabet Inc Class A (NASDAQ: GOOGL)

Alphabet is Google’s parent company and is one of the most intensely-watched picks on the stock market. Its $1.5 trillion market cap is also one of the largest in the world. 

Google is involved in the development of many different types of technology, perhaps most notably its Wing drone delivery program. Wing currently flies in the United States, Australia, and Finland, likely eventually expanding to other countries around the world. 

Its goal is to enable small businesses to offer drone deliveries as an option for local customers.  These drones can cover short distances very quickly and are ideal for delivering perishable food items. 

The program has already been successful in Australia and is outpacing Amazon in terms of drone delivery. It reached a milestone of 100,000 deliveries back in August.

 

best drone stocks to buy

The company is now planning to launch its delivery service in the US, specifically in Dallas.

Several retailers, including Walgreens, Blue Bell Creameries, Easyvet, and Texas Health, are working with Wing to enable customers to order products from their establishments.

To serve as miniature hangers from which drones will be launched, Wing’s operating plan entails putting small shipping containers close to participating retailers.

While Google stock comes with a very high price tag, it delivers consistently solid returns. Its share price has gone up 140% over the last five years. For investors who have the means to buy in, Alphabet is a stock that has proven it can deliver.

Google is also not a drone pure-play, making it a potentially better option for investors with lower risk tolerance.

Best Military Drone Stocks

Northrop Grumman (NYSE: NOC)

Northrop Grumman is one of the largest defense contractors currently in operation, making a range of high-tech drones for the U.S. Air Force. Its top drone is the Global Hawk, a surveillance model used for intelligence and data collection.

While the U.S. Air Force primarily uses the Global Hawk, NASA and NATO rely on it. Because Northrop Grumman primarily contracts with the government, so it has some added financial stability compared to other drone companies.

In addition to drones, it manufactures aircraft, spacecraft, and high-grade missile systems. Northrop’s stock price has seen an overall rise in the last few years and is currently hovering near all-time highs. 

best drone stocks

Much of this growth is due to its success in developing space technology. The company won over $1 billion contract to build a moon station.

According to the most recent third quarter earnings report, Northrop Grumman saw significant increase in revenue in all business units, including Aeronautics (1%), Defense (8%), Mission Systems (5%) and Space (15%) in the first nine months of the year.

Space has been the clear growth engine for the company, and has also increased in size to become the second largest division after aeronautics.

In fact space (5%) and defense (6%) are the only segments that are showing positive growth on the operating income front as well.

Those figures suggest that space is going to continue to be a key focus for Northrop in the future.

Its diverse range of operations and steady government contracts make this company a solid long-term pick moving forward.

Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT)

Lockheed Martin is another leader in the defense sector, known for its huge portfolio of air, space, and security services. While it has some commercial clients, most of its contracts are with the government.

One of Lockheed Martin’s leading drones is a small unmanned aircraft called the Indago 3, designed to fit in a backpack but robust and durable enough for military use. The Indago 3 is only one of a handful of drones that Lockheed Martin has in its repertoire.

Lockheed Martin stock has been looking up of late, rising 24% since the first of the year. Drones, alongside a diverse portfolio of operations, help keep Lockheed stock strong.

best drone stocks

To be more specific, 3,100 F-35s have been ordered by the United States and its allies until 2035. This makes Lockheed one of the top defense companies for consistent, long-term revenue.

And more nations are joining the line-up. Germany and Canada declared plans to purchase several F-35s in the aftermath of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Also, key hypersonic weapons are being developed by Lockheed in addition to its projects. Lockheed is creating the Orion spacecraft for NASA. It manufactures and runs rockets that put spacecraft into orbit with Boeing.

Overall, Lockheed is considered one of the largest defense companies in the US.

Kratos Defense and Security Solutions, Inc. (NASDAQ: KTOS)

Kratos is a San Diego-based defense contractor that works directly with the U.S. Department of Defense. The company has many different divisions, including one for unmanned aerial systems. 

In May of 2021, Kratos contributed to an Air Force experimental program called Skyborg that uses artificial intelligence to control tactical drones. 

 

best drone stocks

 

This marks a fascinating development for the U.S. military and could lead to future projects for Kratos as the Skyborg program continues.  Defense contractors are often considered good picks, as government contracts generate steady revenue.

Kratos was recently awarded a $14 million defense contract for logistics support for drone systems.

Recent second-quarter earnings were quite promising. Revenues for Kratos came in at $256.90 million, nearly 15% higher than the previous year. EBITA was $14.60 million, a jump of nearly 33%.

However, investors should be looking for new contracts that may pave the way to much better financials soon.

Best Drone Penny Stocks

Draganfly Inc. (NASDAQ: DPRO)

Draganfly is a Canadian firm developing drone products for over two decades.  With a share price of less than $5, this stock is an exciting way to invest in the drone trend without breaking the bank. 

This company manufactures a range of drones used by the military, law enforcement, agriculture, energy, and many other industries.

In addition to drones, it offers custom engineering, training, flight and data services, and more to clients. The company recently received an order for 50,000 companion drones for use in various applications.

 

best drone stocks

 

The company may benefit from the $100 billion opportunities that the quickly expanding drone sector offers.

As of its most recent financial report, Draganfly has a run rate of nearly $1.4 million in quarterly sales, and $4.8 million in cash and equivalents.

Draganfly has a distinct competitive edge thanks to its data and solution services concentration.

Share prices are currently in the penny stock range, but Draganfly boasted an impressive fourth quarter with gains across the board. There is always volatility with a penny stock, but Draganfly seems to be putting the pieces in place to skyrocket in the near future.

Ambarella, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMBA)

Ambarella, Inc. is a semiconductor design company that focuses on low-power, high-definition (HD) and Ultra HD video compression, image processing, and computer vision processors. 

Their products are featured in several well known products, such as wearables, action cameras, aftermarket drive recorders, autonomous driving systems, 360° VR applications, and, of course, high-end drones.

While the last two years have seen stupendous revenue growth for Ambarella, the first two quarters of this year have been challenging, with revenues dropping 27%. 

 

best drone stocks

 

The company’s CFO mentioned in its press release that while the near-term scenario is challenging, Ambarella expects to be on a growth trajectory again next year. 

Overall, mid to long-term outlook for their AI inference processor business is positive. 

Recent challenges have meant that the stock is now available at nearly one-fourth its all-time highest price of above $200, and investors might want to get in while its available for cheap.

Should You Invest In Drone Stocks?

Drone stocks are an excellent investment for the future. The world is moving towards automated technology, and drones provide efficiency that can benefit many industries.

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, companies started looking for ways to minimize risks for workers who regularly interact with the public. Drones could be one of those solutions moving forward. They have the potential to complete package deliveries autonomously.

Although this idea hasn’t fully come to fruition yet, people are excited about what drones could do in the future. As drones become more ubiquitous, their stock prices will rise. If you buy now, there is enormous potential for significant returns down the line.

best drone stocks

Drone Stocks: Growth Potential in the Industry

Drone stocks are already taking off, but there’s still plenty of growth potential on the horizon.

We’re seeing more and more drones in the hands of consumers as prices come down. Folks are using the fliers for personal use or video and photography-based businesses.

On the flip side, the applications for drones among business applications keep increasing as well. Companies are turning to drones for surveying, disaster recovery, environmental monitoring, and more menial tasks like window washing. That’s not to mention these aircraft serving as delivery devices for big-box stores.

I’m sure we’re just scraping the surface of what drones can do. As the industry expands, the best drone stocks stand to perform even better.

Impact of Aviation Industry on Drone Stocks

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the aviation industry in general play a major role in the ability of drones to soar the skies.

Drones obviously take up airspace and can pose logistics issues even though they’re not flying at 30,000 feet. Therefore, these unmanned aircraft must still adhere to the rules of the skies, so to speak.

Any changes to FAA policies can have a huge impact on drone stocks and the sector as a whole. Changes to the positive or the negative can affect operations and the overall bottom line.

As companies use drones to do more, new rules will be required to keep everyone on the same level. My mind goes to drones potentially carrying passengers and all the red tape there. Delays or infighting could lead to prolonged measures to get requirements in place.

Hopefully, drone companies will continue to work closely with the aviation industry to ensure a good relationship and minimal hurdles to more widespread use. Businesses willing to cooperate will be more appealing as investment opportunities anyway.

Time will tell which direction drone stocks go with changing FAA guidelines, but I am confident these crafts will serve a larger purpose in the future.

Where to Buy Drone Stocks

The big names in drone manufacturing and usage have built a name for themselves through other channels. These companies spend their time on the major exchanges such as NASDAQ and the NYSE.

Startup drone enterprises will likely be found on over-the-counter (OTC) markets as they set themselves up for growth. Both Webull and Robinhood are excellent platforms to pick up drone stocks from the major exchanges.

Robinhood has an intuitive user interface that makes it easy for new and experienced traders to shop around. Webull offers more complex tools to help advanced investors locate less overt tickers.

To peruse the OTC markets, you’ll want to look into a platform like Fidelity that allows no-commission trades.

Best Drone Stocks: Final Thoughts

Drone technology is changing the way we do so many things in our economy. This extends far beyond the military to HD video recordings, deliveries, aerial maintenance, and potentially even travel. These top drone stocks are a great way to invest in this exciting new technology.

 

Drone Stocks FAQ

Check out these answers to some of the biggest questions surrounding drone stocks.

Which Drone Stock Is Best?

Whether you’re considering drone stocks for military, commercial, or hobby use, you’ll find some good picks on this list. Amazon and Google are on the cusp of using drones for large-scale deliveries. Northrop Grumman is a strong provider of defense drones.

Does DJI Have Stock?

DJI is a leading drone manufacturer in the world today. The company is privately held and does not have any stock at this time. In the meantime, you can check out our other drone stock picks, including AeroVironment and Boeing.

Is Skydio Publicly Traded?

Skydio is the first drone manufacturer in the U.S. to exceed $1 billion in value. Unfortunately, the company doesn’t trade publicly on the stock market. It is a privately owned company with no sign of going public any time soon.

Who Makes Drones for the U.S. Military?

As far as drone technology is concerned, the United States remains the global leader. A handful of companies make drones for the U.S. military. In terms of both products and stocks, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and Kratos Defense are on top.

Which Company Has the Best Drone Technology?

Each company on this list is known for its drone technology. With frequency innovation in the UAV sector, each of these enterprises looks to stay at the forefront of innovation. That said, DJI might be the leading drone company globally but doesn’t trade publicly on the stock market.

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Jessica is a published author and copywriter specializing in personal and investment finance. Her expertise is in financial product reviews and stock market education.