SOURCE: Lauren International

Lauren International

September 16, 2015 16:44 ET

Lauren International Acquires UAV Solutions Company Theiss Aviation

Manufacturing Company Strengthens Unmanned Aircraft Industry Foothold in Ohio

NEW PHILADELPHIA, OH--(Marketwired - September 16, 2015) - Lauren International has acquired Theiss Aviation, Inc., an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) solutions company based in Salem, Ohio. Theiss, renamed Theiss UAV Solutions, LLC under Lauren, will now have access to funding for projects, production resources, and a larger marketing presence through Lauren's family of companies.

"We're thrilled to join with Lauren to mutually expand capabilities for both companies," said Shawn Theiss, Founder and General Manager of Theiss UAV Solutions. "We're excited to align ourselves with a company that shares the same business ethics and beliefs."

With the Theiss UAV Solutions acquisition, Lauren gains another foothold in the aviation and UAV market in Ohio, having purchased North Canton-based radio-controlled (R/C) flight YouTube channel, Flite Test, in 2014.

"Lauren sees a bright future in aviation technology," said Kevin Gray, CEO of Lauren International. "With Shawn's two decades of experience in UAVs, we're confident that Theiss UAV Solutions will excel in its mission to improve human lives through aviation technology."

Shawn Theiss will continue to serve as Founder and General Manager, with Lauren Executive Chad Kapper serving as President. Theiss brings over 24 years of aviation and UAV knowledge and expertise, while Kapper will focus primarily on the marketing presence. Kapper, who founded Lauren's educational radio-controlled flight channel Flite Test in 2010 and who is an avid drone hobbyist, brings expertise in multirotors and the consumer drone industry to Theiss UAV Solutions.

"Flite Test's transparency and constant release of relevant YouTube videos translates to brand trust," said Kapper. "We would like to establish Theiss UAV Solutions as a leader in the rapidly growing consumer and commercial UAV industries by building trust and relationships through brand transparency and relevant solutions."

Theiss UAV will continue to develop autonomous drones to be used for a variety of aerial imagery and data collection applications. Its UAV aircraft will provide solutions for Ohio's utility companies, first responders, municipalities, and agricultural market, as well as continued support and system development for the Department of Defense.

Theiss UAV Solutions will also leverage experience in working with the FAA to obtain airworthiness certificates, certificate of authorizations (COAs), and pilot certifications for clients, enabling more Ohio businesses to use cost-effective UAV technology in their daily operations. In addition, Theiss UAV will provide consultation to help clients form UAV Operations Groups that will operate within FAA guidelines with current knowledge and understanding of Airspace Regulations. It will continue to expand their current UAV Pilot Program to qualified colleges and universities across Ohio.

"We would like to be instrumental in navigating the landscape of FAA regulations," said Theiss. "Drones are helpful tools for a variety of commercial applications, and we want to help our clients learn how they can use UAVs to improve their everyday business in a safe manner."

To meet the large demand for UAV training, consulting, and technology, Theiss UAV Solutions will be hiring software and hardware engineers with an emphasis in aviation. Theiss and Kapper are aggressively searching for pilots and flight instructors to join the company as well.

"We want to build a network of software and hardware engineers, pilots, and flight instructors and connect them with businesses that would benefit from using aviation technology," said Kapper. "Theiss UAV Solutions wants to bridge the gap between people who fly and businesses that need aerial data collection, enabling businesses to use UAV technology and cultivate a healthy relationship with the FAA."

Theiss UAV Solutions becomes the ninth member of the Lauren family of companies. For more information on Lauren International, visit www.laureninternational.com. For more information on Theiss UAV Solutions, visit www.theissuav.com.

Shawn Theiss is Founder and General Manager of Theiss UAV Solutions. He discovered his love of aviation early in life, being the first person to develop a solar powered plane when he was just 10 years old. Shawn founded Theiss UAV Solutions as Theiss Aviation, Inc. in 1991, and he has over 27 years of professional experience in all aspects of Aeronautical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Fabrication Processes, Business Management, and Government Regulations. Shawn has created and managed testing plans and operational flight plans and has worked with the FAA to acquire approvals for conducting these UAV operations plans. He also has over 15 years of active UAV piloting and operations experience and has acted as both a classroom and flight instructor in Theiss UAV Solutions' UAV Operator Training Programs.

Chad Kapper is President of StoneKap Entertainment, a Lauren International executive, and President of Theiss UAV Solutions. He has worked in video-centric marketing for over 17 years. Chad recently completed post-production on a feature film, ROTOR DR1, which will be released later this year as the first drone community collaborated film released commercially in North America. In 2010, Chad discovered a dormant passion for radio-controlled flight. Soon after entering the hobby, Chad started Flite Test, one of the world's most trusted brands in R/C. Over the past few years, Chad has built an enormous global network and developed a thorough knowledge of the consumer drone industry.

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