Saudi Arabia Invests in Electric Urban Air Mobility
NEOM, the smart and sustainable regional development in northwest Saudi Arabia, announced Wednesday a $175 million investment in Volocopter, the pioneer of Urban Air Mobility.
The investment is part of NEOM’s efforts to take a significant equity stake in Volocopter, positioning it as a leader in future mobility solutions.
NEOM also seeks a strategic partnership with Volocopter to progress an advanced air mobility industry in Saudi Arabia, in line with the company’s cutting-edge strategy for its mobility sector.
The announced investment builds on the NEOM-Volocopter joint venture launched in December 2021, which will operate electric air taxi services in NEOM to connect various regions including THE LINE, OXAGON and TROJENA.
“This crucial investment aligns with the directives of Crown Prince and Chairman of NEOM’s Board of Directors, Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, for the Kingdom to achieve sustainability and to develop NEOM into an accelerator of human progress,” said Nadhmi Al-Nasr, Chief Executive Officer at NEOM.
He added that the investment will also contribute to taking humanity closer to a new era of mobility – an era defined by zero-emission, electrically-powered vertical take-off and landing vehicles.
“Together with the Kingdom’s General Authority of Civil Aviation, NEOM and Volocopter will make concepts like air taxis an everyday reality for its residents and visitors,” Al-Nasr stressed.
He added that “powerful partnerships such as the one that NEOM is cultivating with pioneering companies like Volocopter will fuel giant leaps forward – not just for the benefit of NEOM and the Kingdom – but for all.”
For his part, Dirk Hoke, CEO at Volocopter, said this is the first time in history that eVTOLs, with their unique characteristics, are being factored into the design of a region that is being built from scratch.
“This offers a whole new approach to how urban air mobility can increase quality of life in cities,” he said, adding that NEOM's investment bears testament to our leading position as a technology pioneer in the race to become the first company to break into the emerging urban air mobility market.
In addition to NEOM, Volocopter has launched partnerships and offers its services in global cities that include Paris, Singapore and Rome. Volocopter’s partnership with NEOM provides a global living lab for advancing and embedding electric urban air mobility in a multi-modal sustainable transport system.
In close collaboration with Saudi Arabia’s General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA), NEOM and Volocopter are implementing a national test bed for Saudi Arabia to enable the integration of eVTOLs with zero-emission future urban mobility.
Electric air taxis are a key component of NEOM’s mission to implement a truly sustainable and seamlessly connected multi-modal mobility system powered by 100% renewable energy.