How Chris Built A Drone Business in 12 Weeks

Last updated on

May 4, 2021


Want to start your own successful drone business in 12 weeks? 

Do you want to be your own boss? Does managing your own successful drone business sound of interest to you? What if we told you that you can do that with the help of Coptrz?

In this blog post we look at Coptrz Academy student Chris Flannagan, who completed his drone training with us and launched his own drone security business all within 12 weeks! You can watch Jamie Cording speaking to Chris at COPTRZ CON 2021 in this recorded webinar, to hear more about his journey into the drone world:

Coptrz Academy is not just for those wanting to start their own successful drone business, Coptrz Academy can help you incorporate a drone solution into your organisation to revolutionise your operations. Coptrz Academy is the only training provider in the UK to offer OFQUAL accredited training and unparalleled support from the industry leaders.

Chris is just one of many students who have come through the doors of Coptrz Academy and are now doing amazing things with drones, if you want to start your journey with drones, get in touch today and we can get you started.

Launching your own successful drone business: TLP Ltd – Drone Security Specialists 

Chris Flannagan is the founder and Director of TLP Ltd. – Drone Security Specialists.

Chris’ journey into the drone sector was triggered by the lack of opportunities for disabled drone pilots in the security and public safety sector, this was despite extensive experience with the Police and British Army.

In early 2019 fuelled with the passion and knowledge that drones could potentially play in the private security sector, Chris attended a drone insight conference by Steve Coulson the CFO of Coptrz.  This event was pivotal in confirming with Chris that drone solutions within the private security sector were indeed a viable option.

Supported by Help for Heroes and X-Forces Enterprise, Chris established his company: TLP Ltd – Drone Security Specialists.  With the aim of redefining the future of security and public safety, by reducing risk and cost through the application of drone technology.

Despite the various sectors drones can be applied to, Chris realised that his Military and Policing background positioned him in a unique position to launch a drone business focusing on security and public safety.  Following on from the drone insight conference with Coptrz, Chris established a contact within Coptrz (Jamie Cording), who helped identify the most appropriate drone to start with – a DJI Mavic Pro.  Jamie also supported Chris while he studied for his relevant drone qualification and (what used to be called) his Permission for Commercial Operations.

Jamie is hosting weekly ‘Drone Talks’ live on our YouTube channel, where he discusses a different topic every week all about how you can launch your own drone business. You can catch up on one here:

Following on from the launch of TLP Ltd. in 2019 Chris undertook extensive market testing with construction companies; insurance and risk specialists; and end-user clients to ensure the services delivered by TLP Ltd. were fit for purpose.  In 2020, Chris business needed to expand to offer night flying capabilities, contacting Coptrz they advised of a ‘Drone Equipment and Industry Update’ conference they where hosting.  Chris attended this event and spent some valuable time with Sam Denniff of Coptrz, discussing what the needs of TLP were and where the business was going.  Sam recommended the DJI Mavic M2ED as the best solution to meet his needs, and following procurement of this drone it was quickly put into use.  From providing aerial overwatch for ground resources; tackling rural crime issues; to tracking and identifying suspect vehicles and persons.

When Covid-19 hit, Chris found his business had to pivot quickly, this included urgently needing additional flight batteries.  Coptrz by this point in Chris’ business venture was now his preferred supplier of drone equipment; training; and advice; so it was of no surprise to Chris when he contacted Coptrz with this urgent request for flight batteries that they were able to quickly provide them.

During the pandemic, Chris found businesses were understandably cautious about investing in new technology due to the uncertainty of living and working through a pandemic.  Despite the cautiousness of business, the need for new ways of safe working during a pandemic was in demand.  Chris focused his business on providing welfare checks using drones, and working with a client to use drone technology to reduce the numbers of staff on the ground.  From volunteering their services to delivering on contract, Chris flexibility and ability to quickly adapt was key to surviving the pandemic of 2020.

As 2021 broke, Chris’ business and demand for services continued to evolve, and Chris found his business now needed to deliver services in more adverse conditions.  Following consultation with Coptrz, the next investment for TLP Ltd was going to be the Parrot USA and PIX4D React software – this is currently on order with Coptrz and is the next exciting chapter for TLP Ltd.

2021 Also brought a new chapter for TLP Ltd. and that was the decision to train a member of the team as a Commercial Drone Pilot, the choice of provider for this training was simple, Coptrz.  Their continued professionalism, knowledge, and ability to deliver for TLP Ltd. since its launch in 2019, gave Chris the assurance that choosing them as TLP Ltd. training provider was going to give his team member the best training possible.  The UK drone sector workforce is a male-dominated sector with only 6% of that workforce being female, and in the security sector only 24% of the UK workforce is female.  Despite these figures, Samantha, who works in Operational Support for TLP Ltd. has no trepidation about becoming a Commercial Drone Pilot, confident in the knowledge that with Chris’ long history with Coptrz – she will be trained to the highest possible standard.

Chris has found as his business has grown there are no limits to the advantages of using drone technology, there are the inherent challenges of demonstrating and educating people to these advantages, but these are only challenges and not barriers or disadvantages.

TLP Ltd. has grown since its inception in 2019, from Chris working on his own to now working as a team with additional external business support.  Whilst private security is only expected to occupy 8% of the drone sector by 2030, Chris is confident that with his drive; his Policing and Military background; and the established and trusted relationship with Coptrz; that TLP Ltd. is in the best position to maximise their part of that 8% sector.

Not only that, Chris has since become an award winning drone pilot with Coptrz Academy. Winning the ‘Rising Star Award’ at COPTRZ CON 2021, Chris has been recognised for his hard work and dedication to the drone industry.

Start your training with the UK’s leading drone training provider today 

If you want to stand out from the crowd, you’re going to need a training provider that offers Drone Training, Global Qualifications and on-going support from industry experts from across the world.

Don’t leave your training to chance, start your drone training journey with Coptrz Academy.

You too could be the owner of a successful drone business, and we are ready to get you started on your journey today. Who knows, you could be featured on this very blog speaking about your journey as a drone pilot.

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