In a statement, electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft (eVTOL) maker Vertical Aerospace said, it will go public through a merger with a blank-check firm in a deal valued at $2.2 billion.
So far the company has pre-orders for up to 1,000 eVTOL aircraft with launch customers being Avolon and American Airlines; it also has a pre-order option from Virgin Atlantic; total preorders are valued at up to $4 billion.
“If you think about transportation strategically this is the next big frontier,” sid Domhnal Slattery, Avolon’s CEO. “Whether it is airlines operating this as an add-on product or ride sharing businesses in different jurisdictions, I think it is going to take a lot of different forms over time.”
Interest and investments in the zero-emission electric aircraft company comes at a time when the aviation sector iss under mounting investor pressure to help de-carbonize it and boost their environmental, social and governance (ESG) scores.
According to analysts, a key question for the company is how long will it take for the new electric aircraft to be certified by aviation authorities.
In May 2021, Europe’s top regulator said, the region could see the first flying taxis enter service as early as 2024.
Vertical will be listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the ‘EVTL’ ticker.