Bruchsal/Tokyo, 21 February 2023 – Volocopter, the pioneer of urban air mobility (UAM), announced today that Sumitomo Corporation, a Fortune 500 company and one of the largest trading companies in the world, invested in the company’s Series E Funding round. They will also become a key strategic partner for entry into service in the Japanese market starting in 2025. Additionally, Japan Civil Aviation Bureau (JCAB) has accepted Volocopter’s application for concurrent type certification (TC) of the VoloCity aircraft in Japan. To celebrate these milestones, Volocopter will showcase a full-scale VoloCity static model for the first time at the Grand Front Osaka from 8 to 12 March, to raise regional public awareness and acceptance of electric air taxis.
Volocopter is committed to flying its VoloCity air taxi at the 2025 EXPO Osaka Kansai. Today, a major regulatory milestone was achieved to make this ambitious goal a reality: the European Union Aviation Safety Authority (EASA) and JCAB announced that they have accepted Volocopter’s application process for concurrent TC of the fully electric VoloCity aircraft to fly commercially in Japan. Volocopter is currently pushing the envelope on flight testing and is on target to achieve certification for the VoloCity from EASA in 2024. As of now, the company is pursuing concurrent validation with three non-European civil aviation authorities: JCAB in Japan, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in the United States, and the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) in Singapore.
The company’s dedication to Japan dates back to 2018, when the country became one of the first to announce its commitment to bringing UAM to life. This includes a clear roadmap outlining the steps it needs to take to educate the public, introduce regulations, and launch commercial services. As the frontrunner for a Japan-based UAM launch, Volocopter has both the experience and expertise to work with local authorities to create a UAM ecosystem that establishes a safe and sustainable environment for UAM.
To further strengthen Volocopter’s local ties from a business perspective, Sumitomo Corporation became the latest Japanese investor and strategic partner in the company to join its list of partners, via the Series E funding round. Sumitomo Corporation possesses a keen understanding of the global business market, the energy and resource sectors, as well as Japanese market operations. This move diversifies Volocopter’s global partnerships to establish a UAM ecosystem.