- Expansion of strategic partnership and investment from Supernal to help support Urban-Air Port’s plans to develop 200 vertiport sites across the world in the next five years.
- First time a major eVTOL company has invested in a ground infrastructure developer to enable advanced air mobility.
British start-up, Urban-Air Port Ltd (UAP), today announced it has secured investment from Supernal, previously the Urban Air Mobility Division of Hyundai Motor Group, to deliver on the companies’ shared vision of integrating advanced air mobility (AAM) into existing transit networks and creating a seamless passenger journey. The funding will help support UAP’s plans to develop 200 vertiport sites across the world in the next five years.
UAP’s vertiport sites will provide essential infrastructure to help enable mass adoption of eVTOL aircraft – such as cargo drones and air taxis – as public acceptance grows and will transform the way goods and people are transported around urban areas. The world’s first fully operational hub for eVTOLs, Air-One, will open for public visitation in Coventry City Centre in April. The demonstration will show how AAM can help unlock the potential of sustainable mobility and how the industry will work to help reduce congestion, cut air pollution and decarbonise transport.
The landmark investment is the first time a major eVTOL company has invested in an AAM ground infrastructure developer. Urban-Air Port has also named Adam Slepian, Global Head of Partnerships & Business Development at Supernal, to its board of directors, effective immediately. Matthew Sattler, Head of Infrastructure and Ecosystems Partnerships at Supernal, joins UAP’s board of advisors. The close collaboration between the two companies will ensure knowledge and expertise are shared across two crucial components of the industry.
The urban air mobility market is forecasted to grow by 9% annually, reaching US$12.7 billion by 2027[i] and up to US$1 trillion in the next 20 years[ii]. However, lack of ground infrastructure remains one of the biggest barriers to the growth of the AAM industry. For example, only 3% of industry investment in 2021 (US$150 million) was in the physical ground infrastructure[iii], despite 33 times that figure (US$5 billion) announced for the development of eVTOL vehicles in the same period[iv].
Supernal is both convening public and private stakeholders to responsibly shape the AAM industry and developing its own eVTOL and plans to launch its first commercial flight in 2028. The company’s investment in the start-up will help support the development of UAP’s new “vertiport” models including the CityBox delivery drone hub [pictured here], and expansion into new markets.
Ricky Sandhu, Founder and Executive Chairman of Urban-Air Port, said: “Cars need roads. Trains need rails. Planes need airports. eVTOLs need Urban-Air Ports. Despite the unparalleled potential of eVTOL aircraft to revolutionise mobility, the importance of the ground infrastructure that enables them is too often overlooked. With Supernal’s investment and expertise and connection to Hyundai Motor Group, we can supercharge the rollout of sustainable, intermodal and scalable ground infrastructure that will unleash the future of advanced air mobility globally.”
“We are assembling a group of aligned financial and corporate venture capital investors that will extend our leadership. I look forward to welcoming further investors into UAP.”
Jaiwon Shin, Chief Executive Officer of Supernal and President, Hyundai Motor Group, said: “At Supernal, we are on a mission to transform how people and society move, connect, and live; therefore, it is essential we not only develop electric air vehicles, but also help shape the broader advanced air mobility market from the ground up. We are pleased to continue working with Urban-Air Port and support its efforts to create ground infrastructure that works seamlessly with eVTOLs and integrates the advanced air mobility industry with existing modes of transportation.”
About Urban-Air Port Limited
Urban-Air Port Limited is developing fully autonomous zero-emission ground infrastructure for new forms of sustainable urban air transport such as air taxis and autonomous delivery drones. Its mission is to remove the largest single constraint to sustainable air mobility – ground infrastructure – In order to create a zero-emission-mobility ecosystem that will significantly cut congestion and air pollution from passenger and cargo transport. Urban-Air Port is recognised as a world leader in the Advanced Air Mobility sector, with plans to deliver over 200 vertiports across the world in the next five years – ultra-compact, rapidly deployable, operations hubs for manned and unmanned vehicles providing aircraft command and control, charging/refuelling, and cargo and passenger loading. Its world-first Air-One project in Coventry City Centre will be operational from April 2022. The company is backed by major international partners, including Supernal. Urban-Air Port’s team of innovators, aeronautical engineers and aerospace experts have worked at companies including Airbus, Foster + Partners, Arup, JP Morgan, Knight Frank, British Aviation Group, Qinetiq and Uber, and in the UK Defence Sector. Visit www.urbanairport.com for more information and follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.
Supernal (Su·per·nal) is a U.S.-based smart mobility service provider on a mission to redefine how people move, connect, and live. We are developing an Advanced Air Mobility eVTOL vehicle and working to responsibly co-create the supporting ecosystem and integrate it into existing transit options. As part of Hyundai Motor Group, we are both a new business and an established company, with plans to harness our automotive manufacturing heritage to make Advanced Air Mobility accessible to the masses. Visit www.supernal.aero for more information and follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.