Airbus has declared its new Silicon Valley-based $150 million venture capital fund and innovation centre to be fully operational.

The objective of the Airbus Ventures fund is identifying and investing in “visionary entrepreneurs in the global aerospace ecosystem,” says the manufacturer.

It has already made an unspecified investment in an Arizona company, Local Motors, which has expertise in the field of micro-factories. It will use funds from Airbus Ventures to set up a micro-factories and laboratories in Germany with an aerospace focus.

The innovation centre, which Airbus has branded A3 (A-Cubed), will work closely with Airbus, with an eye to identifying and pursuing technological opportunities. It is base in the city of San Jose, the heart of California’s “Silicon Valley” region.

“A3 is charged with harnessing the Silicon Valley ecosystem to pursue opportunities for technological, business model, manufacturing, and other types of disruption with the goal of disrupting Airbus Group and its Divisions, as well as the rest of the industry,” says Airbus.

A3 is working with ride-sharing firm Uber to market on-demand transportation services using Airbus Helicopters H125 and H130s.

The Airbus Ventures fund is headed by Tim Dombrowski, who as a partner at the venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz focused on enterprise portfolio company development.

Paul Eremenko will lead A3. He previously worked at Google, where he served as director of engineering in the “advanced technology and projects” (ATAP) organisations.

Source: Cirium Dashboard