Volocopter, the pioneer of urban air mobility (UAM), has joined the Osaka Roundtable, an institution eager to bring UAM to one of the busiest cities in Asia. As part of the engagement, the German eVTOL (electric vertical take-off and landing) developer also committed to fly during the Expo 2025 Osaka Kansai.
Together with long-term partner and investor Japan Airlines (JAL), who recently reserved Volocopter aircraft, Volocopter accelerates its commitment in Japan and plans to conduct public test flights as early as 2023.
On 1 October 2021, Volocopter partook in the Osaka Roundtable. With nine million residents, Osaka Prefecture has one of the largest industrial bay areas in Asia, including several international seaports and airports within its vicinity, which makes it an ideal location to test over land, water, and city conditions. As host of the Expo 2025 Osaka Kansai, Osaka has strong ambitions to kickstart UAM businesses from this event onward, as a leader in an already advanced nation.
Since 2018, Japan has been proactively shaping its future of air mobility and set an ambitious target to achieve full commercialization of eVTOL air taxi and heavy lift cargo drone business by 2030. Japan is one of few countries in the world that boasts a comprehensive roadmap for UAM businesses to achieve these goals on a national level.
Furthermore, Volocopter is strategically joining forces with local partners and regulators early in the commercialization process to strengthen its position within the market. Recently, JAL reserved 100 Volocopter aircraft (VoloDrone and VoloCity) units for its future use. Additionally, Volocopter has started direct communications with local government offices to discuss how Volocopter products can support the local ecosystem in disaster relief or to aid regeneration of industrial and suburban locations through air bridges.
Florian Reuter – CEO, Volocopter: “We are honoured to be seated at the Osaka Roundtable and take flight at an important milestone of the Expo 2025 Osaka Kansai. Japan’s and Osaka’s commitment to UAM commercialization and its open approach allows us to be involved in pioneering them into the future of mobility. As the world’s first and only eVTOL developer with successful public flights in several continents and a family of multi-functional aircraft, we are confident that we will become an integral part of Japan’s future UAM ecosystem.
Together with our partners, we aim to improve lives in densely populated areas with our sustainable UAM services.”
Besides Japan, Volocopter has committed to air taxi services in Singapore within the next three years and announced the delivery of 150 of Volocopter products to China’s Geely within the next five years.
Volocopter is the first and only eVTOL developer to hold Design Organisation Approval (DOA) and Production Organisation Approval (POA), two strategic certification approvals from the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) to design and produce aircraft in-house. Once certified for commercial launch in Europe, Volocopter is positioned for concurrent type certification approvals in the U.S. from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the civil aviation authority in Singapore (CAAS).
Volocopter is building the world’s first sustainable and scalable urban air mobility business to bring affordable air taxi services to megacities worldwide. With the VoloCity, the company is developing the first fully electric “eVTOL” aircraft in certification to transport passengers safely and quietly within cities. Volocopter leads and cooperates with partners in infrastructure, operations, and air traffic management to build the ecosystem necessary to ‘Bring Urban Air Mobility to Life’.
In 2011, Volocopter performed the first-ever crewed flight of a purely electric multicopter and has since showcased numerous public flights with its full-scale aircraft. The most notable have been the public test flights at Singapore’s Marina Bay in October 2019 and the world’s first autonomous eVTOL flight in Dubai 2017. Volocopter is also developing products for the logistics space with their heavy-lift cargo variant, the VoloDrone.
Founded in 2011 by Stephan Wolf and Alexander Zosel, Volocopter has 400 employees in offices in Bruchsal, Munich, and Singapore. The company has raised a total of €322 million in equity. Volocopter‘s investors include Daimler, Geely, DB Schenker, BlackRock, and Intel Capital amongst others.