Vertical Aerospace Group Ltd., a UK engineering and aeronautical business developing electric Vertical Take-Off and Landing (eVTOL) aircraft, has entered into a definitive agreement for a business combination with Broadstone Acquisition Corp. (NYSE: BSN), a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC). The transaction will result in Vertical becoming a publicly-traded company, with a pro forma equity value of approximately $2.2 billion.
Vertical will be listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) following the combination, which is expected to close in the second half of 2021, under the ticker EVTL.
Vertical has also announced investments from American Airlines, Avolon, Honeywell and Rolls-Royce.
Virgin Atlantic and Vertical say they will explore a joint venture to develop the launch of Virgin Atlantic branded short haul eVTOL network in the UK.
Stephen Fitzpatrick, Vertical CEO and Founder, says: “This is the most exciting time in aviation for almost a century; electrification will transform flying in the 21st century in the same way the jet engine did 70 years ago. Today’s announcement brings together some of the largest and most respected technology and aeronautical businesses in the world and together we can achieve our aim of making the VA-X4 the first zero carbon aircraft that most people will fly on. The United Kingdom is already a global leader in aerospace innovation and we believe Vertical Aerospace will be the British engineering champion to drive the aviation industry forward.”
Shai Weiss, CEO of Virgin Atlantic, adds: “With innovation and sustainability leadership firmly in our DNA, we are excited to be partnering with Vertical Aerospace to pioneer sustainable and zero emissions air travel in the UK. We pride ourselves on building enduring strategic partnerships and are thrilled to be working alongside Vertical in its mission to bring eVTOL travel to the UK. Our partnership includes an option for Virgin Atlantic to acquire up to 150 eVTOL VA-X4 aircraft and exploration of a Joint Venture to bring short haul, electric vehicle connectivity to cities and our UK airport hubs, starting with London Heathrow as well as Manchester and London Gatwick. Combining the design, engineering and manufacturing expertise of Vertical with the award-winning customer experience and operational excellence of Virgin Atlantic.”
With projected speeds over 200mph, near silent when in flight, zero emissions and low cost per passenger mile, Vertical’s VA-X4 is expected to open up urban air mobility to a whole new range of passengers and transform how we travel.