Europe Small UAV Market Size & Share Analysis - Growth Trends & Forecasts (2024 - 2029)

The Report Covers Europe Small UAV Market Analysis and it is segmented by Wing Type (Fixed-wing and Rotary-wing), Size (Micro, Mini, and Nano), Application (Military and Law Enforcement, and Civil and Commercial), and Geography.

Europe Small UAV Market Size

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Europe Small UAV Market Summary
Study Period 2019-2029
Base Year For Estimation 2023
Market Size (2024) USD 2 Billion
Market Size (2029) USD 3.04 Billion
CAGR (2024 - 2029) 8.75 %
Market Concentration Medium

Major Players

Europe Small UAV Market Major Players

*Disclaimer: Major Players sorted in no particular order


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Europe Small UAV Market Analysis

The Europe Small UAV Market size is estimated at USD 2 billion in 2024, and is expected to reach USD 3.04 billion by 2029, growing at a CAGR of 8.75% during the forecast period (2024-2029).

The small UAV market is slowly becoming one of the major game-changers in the modern technological era. With its wide range of applications, small UAVs are expected to have a high adoption rate in European countries, with enterprises across different industries investing in these products. The use of small UAVs in the commercial sector has increased over the years. The low-cost applications of small UAVs in forestry, precision agriculture, air traffic management, road traffic monitoring, mining, wildlife monitoring, etc., are some of the factors propelling the growth of the market in the European region.

However, regulations relating to the commercial use of small UAVs from CAA and other organizations are stricter. In countries like the UK, permission from the CAA is required for any commercial work with a drone. Such regulations may pose a challenge to market growth in the region.

Europe Small UAV Market Trends

The Rotary-wing Segment is Projected to Show Significant Growth During the Forecast Period

Currently, the rotary-wing segment holds a larger market share, compared to the fixed-wing segment. Small helicopter drones and quadcopter drones are being used on a large scale, both for military and commercial purposes in Europe. The small UAVs have vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) capabilities and the advantage of being able to be deployed directly from the ground instead of being launched by hand or a launch platform. Furthermore, the high maneuverability of rotary-wing UAVs and their inherent ability to hover over a designated position are exceptionally useful for conducting surveillance missions for the defense forces. Also, over the past few years, the use of rotary-wing UAVs has increased in the agriculture sector, as they support evidence-based planning and spatial data collection for conducting soil health scans, monitoring crop health, applying fertilizers, and detecting threats to crops, such as pests, diseases, and weeds. Thus, diversified applications are driving the adoption of rotary-wing UAVs in the region.

For instance, in June 2023, Leonardo SpA presented a number of new innovations for its AWHero rotary-wing unmanned aerial vehicle (RW UAV) on the opening day of the Seafuture 2023 expo. The company introduced a heavy fuel powerplant based on a unique twin-engine solution, airframe modifications that deliver significant operational and support advantages in terms of powerplant integration, system/sensor integration and field of view, payload bay capacity, maintainability, and on-deck stability; advanced sensor modularity; and the introduction of the Leonardo Gabbiano TS Ultralight maritime radar. Thus, growing adoption of rotary-wing drones for various military and commercial applications drive the growth of the market.

Europe Small UAV Market: Drone Hardware Unit Shipments in Europe, in Thousands, 2018-2022

The United Kingdom to Witness the Highest CAGR During the Forecast Period

The UK has one of the largest fleets of small UAVs in Europe. Small UAVs are largely being adopted by the police and law enforcement agencies in the UK. The military is also planning to procure small UAVs for surveillance purposes. With the usage of small UAVs continuing to rise, the UK government enacted legislation to help achieve safer flying across the country. Hence, from November 2019, registration with the Civil Aviation Authority has been made compulsory for drones weighing more than 250 g. With the growing adoption of small UAVs in the commercial sector, the most immediate economic impact will come from lower costs and improved productivity. Using UAVs to automate routine tasks will also enhance safety performance, reduce risk, improve quality, and free people up to focus on value-added work.

British Telecom is working on prototypes of small UAVs to provide temporary internet connectivity to challenging locations, such as areas that have suffered an earthquake. The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) and other media groups have begun using small UAVs for filming. The use of small UAVs is also increasing in fields, like firefighting, the construction industry, the oil and gas industry, and the mining industry, as these fields require inspection of sites where human access is difficult and risky. For instance, in December 2022, the UK Ministry of Defence has given a 10-year contract to the UK branch of arms company Lockheed Martin to supply the British Army with 250 mini-drones worth USD 157 million. Drones will have high-resolution imaging capabilities that will allow them to find and identify prospective targets. The small drones will include artificial intelligence capabilities such as smart targeting and threat recognition.

Therefore, the small UAV market in the UK will continue to increase during the forecast period. At the same time, countries in the Rest of Europe, like Belgium, Denmark, Poland, and Greece, are increasingly adopting the usage of drones for various purposes.

Europe Small UAV Market: Forecasted Number of UAVs Used Commercially, in Units, United Kingdom, 2030

Europe Small UAV Industry Overview

The Europe small UAV market is currently fragmented, with many players producing drones for civilian and commercial purposes. SZ DJI Technology Co. Ltd, Parrot Drones SAS, Northrop Grumman Corporation, Teledyne FLIR LLC, and Lockheed Martin Corporation are some of the major players in the market. In Europe, the newly formulated drone regulations are to be strictly adhered to while operating a drone. As the small UAV market is still in its initial stage, players have the privilege of reaching out to untapped markets to gain significant revenues. Technological innovations may also help players attract new customers, thereby boosting their revenue growth. For instance, in May 2022, The UK MOD granted a contract to Marlborough Communications Limited (MCL) and Skydio as part of the Future Capabilities Group (FCG) nano unmanned aerial systems (nUAS) framework. The contract, worth USD 3.32 million, is for the supply of Skydio's autonomous X2D drones, as well as its artificial intelligence (AI) and 3D Scan capacity. Skydio drones can execute surveillance, security patrol, and incident response missions and have 360°obstacle avoidance and night operation capabilities.

Europe Small UAV Market Leaders

  1. Lockheed Martin Corporation

  2. Parrot Drones SAS

  3. Northrop Grumman Corporation

  4. SZ DJI Technology Co., Ltd.

  5. Teledyne FLIR LLC

*Disclaimer: Major Players sorted in no particular order

Europe Small UAV Market Concentration
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Europe Small UAV Market News

  • In January 2023, Elbit Systems Ltd. announced a contract with the UK to equip the British Army with Magni-X drones. The Defence Ministry will receive the micro-unmanned aerial system as part of a transaction with the subordinate Defence Equipment and Support agency's Future Capability Group. The deal is part of the United Kingdom's efforts to expand the use of drones in the Army's Human Machine Teaming initiative.
  • In May 2022, the French defense innovation agency, L'Agence de l'Innovation de Défense (AID), has issued two proposals for concepts for low-cost small attack drones. The first call is for the Larinae project, which will develop a system to neutralize targets at a range of more than 50 kilometers, and the second is for the complementing Colibri project, which will develop a system to neutralize targets in the region of contact with the enemy at a range of more than 5 kilometers.

Europe Small UAV Market Report - Table of Contents


    1. 1.1 Study Assumptions

    2. 1.2 Scope of the Study




    1. 4.1 Market Overview

    2. 4.2 Market Drivers

    3. 4.3 Market Restraints

    4. 4.4 Porter's Five Forces Analysis

      1. 4.4.1 Threat of New Entrants

      2. 4.4.2 Bargaining Power of Buyers/Consumers

      3. 4.4.3 Bargaining Power of Suppliers

      4. 4.4.4 Threat of Substitute Products

      5. 4.4.5 Intensity of Competitive Rivalry


    1. 5.1 Wing Type

      1. 5.1.1 Fixed-wing

      2. 5.1.2 Rotary-wing

    2. 5.2 Size

      1. 5.2.1 Micro

      2. 5.2.2 Mini

      3. 5.2.3 Nano

    3. 5.3 Application

      1. 5.3.1 Military and Law Enforcement

      2. 5.3.2 Civil and Commercial

    4. 5.4 Geography

      1. 5.4.1 Country

        1. United Kingdom

        2. Germany

        3. France

        4. Russia

        5. Rest of Europe


    1. 6.1 Vendor Market Share

    2. 6.2 Company Profiles

      1. 6.2.1 SZ DJI Technology Co., Ltd.

      2. 6.2.2 Parrot Drones SAS

      3. 6.2.3 Northrop Grumman Corporation

      4. 6.2.4 Lockheed Martin Corporation

      5. 6.2.5 Textron Inc.

      6. 6.2.6 AeroVironment Inc.

      7. 6.2.7 Yuneec

      8. 6.2.8 Teledyne FLIR LLC

      9. 6.2.9 Elbit Systems Ltd.

      10. 6.2.10 UAS Europe AB

      11. 6.2.11 THALES

      12. 6.2.12 DELAIR SAS

      13. 6.2.13 Shield AI

      14. 6.2.14 Microdrones GmbH


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Europe Small UAV Industry Segmentation

The small UAV class of unmanned aerial vehicle is light enough to be man-portable and deployed from an unconventional launch platform. The maximum gross takeoff weight of small UAVs is less than 20 lbs. The market study includes the use of small UAVs in various industries like military, law enforcement, public safety agencies, infrastructure, and commercial applications, including firefighting and oil and gas, in the European region. These UAVs find applications in surveillance, aerial photography, agriculture, environmental monitoring, and disaster response.

The Europe small UAV market is segmented into wing type, application, size, and geography. By wing type, the market is segmented into fixed-wing and rotary-wing. By size, the market is segmented into micro, mini, and nano. By application, the market is segmented into military and law enforcement, and civil and commercial. The report also covers the market sizes and forecasts for the small UAV market in major countries across Europe. For each segment, the market size is provided in terms of value (USD).

Wing Type
Military and Law Enforcement
Civil and Commercial
United Kingdom
Rest of Europe
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Europe Small UAV Market Research FAQs

The Europe Small UAV Market size is expected to reach USD 2 billion in 2024 and grow at a CAGR of 8.75% to reach USD 3.04 billion by 2029.

In 2024, the Europe Small UAV Market size is expected to reach USD 2 billion.

Lockheed Martin Corporation, Parrot Drones SAS, Northrop Grumman Corporation, SZ DJI Technology Co., Ltd. and Teledyne FLIR LLC are the major companies operating in the Europe Small UAV Market.

In 2023, the Europe Small UAV Market size was estimated at USD 1.82 billion. The report covers the Europe Small UAV Market historical market size for years: 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022 and 2023. The report also forecasts the Europe Small UAV Market size for years: 2024, 2025, 2026, 2027, 2028 and 2029.

Europe Small UAV Industry Report

Statistics for the 2024 Europe Small UAV market share, size and revenue growth rate, created by Mordor Intelligence™ Industry Reports. Europe Small UAV analysis includes a market forecast outlook 2029 and historical overview. Get a sample of this industry analysis as a free report PDF download.

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Europe Small UAV Market Size & Share Analysis - Growth Trends & Forecasts (2024 - 2029)