German air taxi developer Volocopter has secured new funding just weeks after chief executive Dirk Hoke had raised the prospect of insolvency for the start-up.

“We are pleased to say that Volocopter has been successfully financed by several existing shareholders,” the company told FlightGlobal on 5 June. “Due to ongoing contractual obligations, we cannot disclose the investor names and funds raised now.”

VoloCity Paris 2023

Source: SIAE

Volocopter has secured new funding from investors, the company said on 5 June 2024

Having already raised €500 million ($538 million) in start-up support, Volocopter has emerged as a global leader in the race to certify a whole new class of air transport vehicles. It has flown five different prototypes in 10 countries, and is marching toward certification of its VoloCity design, planned by the end of this year. 

But in April, the company was confronted with the reality of running out of cash when an expected state loan guarantee of up to €100 million did not materialise, leaving it to scramble for alternative means of financing.

“Volocopter has been transparent that the fundraising market has been difficult in the past few years,” chief executive Dirk Hoke told FlightGlobal at the time. “The German federal government is still very supportive of Volocopter… but in general, Germany has very limited mechanisms to support start-ups in the late stages of financing.”

Volocopter is still hoping to to fly VoloCity at the Summer Olympic Games in Paris, which begin in less than two months. It is as yet unclear how comprehensive the company’s flight programme at the event will be, with security concerns tempering Hoke’s initial enthusiasm about the project. 

VoloCity’s options range from, at best, selling tickets for an air taxi ride to anyone (for €10-15 per person per kilometre), all the way through limited operations with a permit to fly – either transporting athletes or other third-party guests, or at its most restrictive, a basic demonstration flight campaign with just one test pilot on board.

A network of five vertiports across the French capital will be completed before the event, and routes have been defined.

“This year, Volocopter is determined to achieve our development milestones toward type certification and fly in Paris in the summer when all eyes are on the city,” the company adds.