Volocopter, a German electric air taxi manufacturer, announced Tuesday it’s raised an additional $182 million as it continues to test various aircraft and pursues certification of its VoloCity air taxi.
Company executives heralded the new funding “despite the generally tense economic climate.” Momentum continues to build around the advanced air mobility sector, which saw $5.8 billion in investments in 2021, according to a Deloitte analysis released this year.
The pending introduction of eVTOLs, or electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft, is seen as one transportation innovation that could reduce metropolitan areas’ road congestion. But regulation and commercialization remain works in progress. Although Volocopter is focused on launching in international cities like Singapore, Rome and Paris, it’s also set its sights on U.S. cities, including Los Angeles.
One of the investors in the second signing of Volocopter’s Series E round is Neom, which is behind the Saudi Arabian government’s utopian futuristic city project that includes the 105-mile-long “The Line.” Neom and Volocopter formed a joint venture last year. “At Neom we strongly believe in the potential for urban air mobility to provide a new dimension to future integrated transport systems,” Head of Mobility Florian Lennert said in the announcement.
Other investors in the space include major commercial airlines like United Airlines and American Airlines as they look for new ways to reduce aircraft emissions and transport passengers to airports and within cities. American placed an eVTOL order this year with U.K.-based Vertical Aerospace, which expects to deliver aircraft in 2025
Volocopter backed away from plans to go public late last year via a SPAC merger, citing unfavorable timing for SPAC deals. But other companies in the space have gone public, with third-quarter reports coming soon from Joby Aviation and Archer Aviation, both California-based eVTOL companies. Joby is scheduled to report third-quarter results Wednesday, and Archer will report on Nov. 10.