Germany-based Volocopter has raised $170 million in its initial funding of Series E round, led by South Korean investor WP Investment at a pre-money valuation of $1.7 billion.
Funds raised will assist Volocopter in certification of its electric passenger air taxi, and is expected to help Volocopter achieve commercial launch worldwide, according to an official statement.
With the latest round of funding, Volocopter has raised $579 million.
"This funding round is a testament to Volocopter's leading position in what is a highly attractive emerging market," says Florian Reuter, CEO, Volocopter. "We continue to make significant technical and commercial progress as we work toward bringing urban air mobility to life at scale in cities worldwide."
With its family of aircraft (VoloCity, VoloConnect and VoloDrone), the company is taking an unique approach by developing urban air mobility (UAM) as a holistic ecosystem. "As the first and only electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) company to receive Design Organisation Approval (DOA) from the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), Volocopter has committed to launching commercial air taxi services in cities like Singapore, Rome, and Paris."
Volocopter and South Korea-based WP Investment will enter into a strategic partnership by creating a joint venture that will soon bring urban air mobility to South Korean cities.
"We are confident that Volocopter will be among the first to bring UAM to cities globally since seeing its aircraft fly in Seoul last year," says Dr. Lei Wang, Chairman, WP Investment. "As a leader in ESG investment, we are excited to empower city sustainability through Volocopter."
Volocopter recently announced that it has signed an in-principle financing agreement with Aviation Capital Group (ACG) for the sale and leasing of Volocopter aircraft for up to $1 billion. "Once aircraft certification has been achieved, the agreement will allow Volocopter to offer its operating entities and customers worldwide attractive leasing options, a key to rapidly scaling the business in the future."
Volocopter and global logistics service provider DB Schenker are developing solutions for the fast and emission-free transport of goods. Volocopter's heavy-lift drone - Volodrone - was presented to German federal politicians for the first time at the National Aviation Conference (Nationale Luftfahrtkonferenz) at Berlin Brandenburg airport. The aircraft is electrically operated and can transport up to 200 kilograms of cargo with a range of up to 40 kilometers.