Shanghai (Gasgoo)- German flying taxi startup Volocopter announced it has raised 50 million euros ($55.13 million) in the first closing of its Series C funding round, which was led by Zhejiang Geely Holding Group (Geely Holding) and involved other investors like German auto giant Daimler, according to a post on Geely's WeChat account.
The latest funding will increase the total capital of Volocopter to 85 million euros. It will be used towards bringing the VoloCity aircraft to commercial launch over the next three years, said Geely Holding. Now, the German startup is in discussions with other investors for a second closing around the end of the year.
Founded in 2011, Volocopter has built three generation of Volocopter aircraft, two of which were given go-ahead to conduct manned and unmanned flight with 35 million euros raised in total. According to Geely Holding, the startup is committed to developing electric flying taxis with the aim of saving people time and helping megacities transform their transportation systems towards a more sustainable future by adding a new mobility option for their citizens.
Besides, Geely Holding has also agreed to build a joint venture with Volocopter to introduce Urban Air Mobility solution to Chinese market. The German startup's products will be manufactured and popularized in China by Geely Holidng via the joint venture.
“Geely is transitioning from being an automotive manufacturer to a mobility technology group. Our latest cooperation with Daimler, building on our partnership in smart and premium ride-hailing services, as well as our joint venture with Volocopter underlines our confidence in Volocopter air taxis as the next ambitious step in our wider expansion in both electrification and new mobility services,” said Li Shufu, Geely Holding Chairman.
Prior to Volocopter, Geely closed the acquisition of Terrafugia, a U.S.-based flying car developer, as early as November 2017. The subsidiary started taking orders of its first flying car model dubbed “Transition” and planned to hand over them to consumers from 2019, according to reports released last October.
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