A $10 billion Chinese drone company could soon be here

April 15, 2015, 12:55 PM UTC
Product Displays At The CP+ Camera And Imaging Expo
A DJI Phantom 2 Vision+ drone, manufactured by SZ DJI Technology Co., flies during the CP+ Camera and Photo Imaging Show in Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan, on Thursday, Feb. 12, 2015. The largest camera and photo imaging show in Japan, hosted by the Camera & Imaging Products Association, runs through Feb. 15. Photographer: Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Photograph by Kiyoshi Ota — Bloomberg/Getty Images

Forget the $1 billion valuation and the mere “unicorn” status it brings. The new high benchmark in tech is a valuation of $10 billion. The companies that already have it include Xiaomi, Uber, Palantir, Airbnb, Dropbox, Snapchat, SpaceX, and Pinterest.

Soon, you can add to that list a Chinese drone-maker you’ve almost certainly never heard of: Da-Jiang Innovations Science and Technology Co.

DJI, as it is known, is in talks to raise a round of funding that would value the company at $10 billion, the Wall Street Journal reports. That would make it your newest tech “decacorn.”

Among the VC firms looking to invest are Accel Ventures and Kleiner Perkins. Sequoia, the Journal reports, has already invested in DJI, but the round was never disclosed.

The company, which is headquartered in Shenzhen, makes consumer drones and has helped spur the craze in China with its remote-controlled helicopter drones made to hold a camera for shooting footage from above. Its product line includes options such as the Ronin-M, Inspire 1, and Phantom 3. (It was a DJI Phantom that crashed on the White House lawn at the end of January.) DJI’s tagline? “The future of possible.”

Until this rumored round, the company has refrained from raising major venture capital (in fact, the CrunchBase page for DJI does not list any VC funding). The company is expected to hit $1 billion in revenue in 2015 and has grown its workforce to some 3,000 employees. CEO Frank Wang founded DJI in 2006, when he was still a college student.

If the round is completed and DJI earns decacorn status, expect to see other drone makers ramp up their funding as well. Much like payments companies (Square, Stripe), big data (Palantir, Cloudera), and transportation services (Uber, Kuaidi Dache-Didi Dache), it is an industry likely to produce multiple billion-dollar startups.

Watch Fortune.com this month for an update to our comprehensive ranking of these companies, the Unicorn List.
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