Helicopter services in rush for electric air taxi future

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Blade Urban Air Mobility, a helicopter shuttle company backed by Cathie Wood and David Zaslav, has signed a $ 12 million contract with a Canadian helicopter operator. Electric air taxi It will be a reality.

The New York-based group, which maximizes revenue from travel to the city’s airports and Hamptons, is a regular passenger business at Helijet, a Canadian company that flies between Vancouver, Victoria and Nanaimo, British Columbia. Acquired the exclusive right of.

According to executives, the deal is part of land acquisition for heliports, routes and customers, and the new generation of quieter, lower-emission short-hop aircraft will use existing, constrained infrastructure, at least initially. need to do it.

In the first eight months of 2021, investors invested $ 4.3 billion in companies developing what is known as Electric Vertical Takeoff and Landing (eVOTL) or Electric Vertical Aircraft (EVA), known as McKinsey. Calculated..The public list was given to the electric aircraft company Joby Aviation Lilium is valued at $ 4.5 billion and $ 1.9 billion, respectively.

However, regulatory agencies have not yet approved electric aircraft for passenger services. Blade has signed contracts with four EVA developers, including Beta Technologies and Embraer’s Eve, to launch in 2024, but its business model assumes that it will not launch until 2025. I’m telling investors that I am.

Deloitte Estimated US “advanced air mobility” passenger revenues will reach $ 4 billion in 2025 and $ 57 billion in 2035, with the broader market worth $ 115 billion.

JPMorgan predicted in September that the entire market would be worth “hundreds of billions of dollars” by the 2030s, but only a handful of EVA companies are on track for regulatory certification by 2025. Yes, he warned that some companies are planning to compete with Blade.

Blade plans to use Helijet to launch helicopter services between Seattle and Vancouver. It’s the hub of two large tech industries, and ultimately, it’s expected to be motivated to try early EVA technology.

The high promises made to EVA continue to attract tech executives and investors.Two of woodFunds, Ark Autonomous Technology and Robotics Exchange Traded Fund and Space Exploration and Innovation ETF, have disclosed at least 11% of Blade’s total stake in recent weeks.

Zaslav, CEO of Discovery Communications, owns 4.5% of Blade and was one of the earliest investors alongside former Google chair Eric Schmidt and IAC’s Barry Diller. Blade raised $ 365 million by opening a deal with a special acquisition company (Spac) in May and had a market value of approximately $ 600 million at the closing price on Wednesday.

Rob Wiesenthal, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Blade, said his company provided brands, apps and passenger devices to contracted operators, but did not own an aircraft. So, “Once EVA is ready, it’s just an aircraft replacement for us. The rest of the ecosystem is already built and will be operational,” he said.

“People who want to participate in this project are likely to have to use their existing infrastructure,” Wiesenthal said, until local governments were persuaded that EVA could land in areas where helicopters are not currently allowed. He said.

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The post Helicopter services in rush for electric air taxi future appeared first on California News Times.

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