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To Head Off Slowdown, Drone Leader DJI Targets Businesses

Known as the “Apple of drones,” DJI is flying high this year after mostly clearing the skies of its hardware competitors in the consumer market. But CEO Frank Wang isn’t winding down. He’s pitting teams of DJI engineers and salespeople against each other, with financial consequences for some of the winners and losers, said a person with direct knowledge of the organization.

The Information has learned that the Shenzhen-based company has targeted $2 billion in gross sales this year, up from more than $1 billion last year. That would represent a strong but slower growth rate than the year before, when it generated around $500 million. There also are concerns among some at DJI that growth in the consumer market will slow down, given the challenges of reaching mainstream customers, including women. That makes it imperative to jumpstart the enterprise market for drones, which many DJI executives and outside analysts say will eventually dwarf the consumer one.

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This article has been updated to correct DJI's gross margin, which is higher than 50% while net margin is around 25%.

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Kevin Lee and Amir Efrati commented on this article.
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DJI could face real competition in the enterprise business, which is still in its infancy.