Home » Beta Technologies gets massive funding boost to build electric cargo copters

Beta Technologies gets massive funding boost to build electric cargo copters

by Sion Geschwindt
Beta Technologies gets massive funding boost for electric cargo copters

Beta Technologies, an electric aircraft startup working with UPS and backed by Amazon, has raised $375m (c.£290m) to prepare to build a fleet of cargo-delivery copters.

The Series B round was led by TPG’s Rise Climate fund and Fidelity and boosts its valuation to $2.4bn (c.£1.85bn).

Beta has already raised about $800m (c.£619m) as it works to get its Alia eVTOL craft approved by the Federal Aviation Administration.

Though the startup plans to eventually ferry passengers, its initial focus is supplying battery-powered cargo haulers to the US Air Force, United Therapeutics, and logistics giant UPS – which hopes to have 10 Alia vehicles in operation by 2024 and up to 140 more in the future.

The Alia, with a 50-foot wingspan, is designed to carry up to 635kg of goods or as many as five people.

Along with supporting its own aircraft, Beta intends to develop a charging network that can re-power a range of electric vehicles, including trucks and support vehicles.

Kyle Clark, Beta’s founder and CEO, said: “This support allows us to complete the construction of our production facilities and accelerate our certification work to create a greener and more efficient future for all applications of aviation, starting with cargo and logistics and moving to passenger missions immediately thereafter.”

Jonathan Garfinkel, TPG partner, added: “We believe Beta is uniquely positioned to navigate the technological and regulatory environment and drive long-term growth and innovation in the aviation sector.”

Image: Beta Technologies’ Alia eVTOL aircraft during a test flight. (Credit: Beta Technologies/Brian Jenkins)

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