2 March 2018 || 1 min read
Airbus recently disclosed that it may invest up to $15 million dollars in the helicopter and aircraft chartering service Blade for a reported 10 percent share of equity, according to persons familiar with the transaction. The investment may be an effort to acquire expertise into the helicopter-hailing app that is integral to Blade’s customer experience. Airbus eventually intends on utilizing a similar booking process for their eVTOL’s, the Vahana and CityAirbus.
This investment represents an ongoing trend to bridge the gap between current VTOL solutions – helicopters – and the future of eVTOL implementation on a wide scale. Currently, companies like Blade maintain the largest collection of infrastructure to support VTOL operations in urban areas. Urban infrastructure is identified as one of the three main challenges supporting Uber’s Elevate initiative, and acquisitions by other large aerospace corporations such as Boeing Co.’s purchase of Aurora Flight Sciences emphasize the competitive trend of being first-to-market with a functional implementation of an eVTOL system in an urban environment.