Flying Vehicle Startup Gets $15M to Expand in California

Aibot plans to create 700 full-time jobs and invest $494 million over the next five years

Chuck Martin, Editorial Director AI & IoT

November 21, 2023

3 Min Read

A California eVTOL (electric vertical takeoff and landing) startup has been awarded a $15 million grant to expand its operations in Long Beach, California.

The recipient, Aibot, said the grant will be used to enhance Aibot’s research and development capabilities, flight testing and manufacturing.

The funds are coming from the California Competes grant, from the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (Go-Biz).

Earlier this year, Go-Biz received nearly $2 billion in grant requests for the $120 million in grants available through the California Competes program.

The grant program was created to boost job creation and economic development by backing innovative companies that could expand in California.

“Advanced air mobility is an industry of the future, and we want to ensure California remains a leader in that industry,” said Dee Dee Myers, senior advisor to Governor Newsom and Go-Biz director. “We look forward to Aibot’s success as they build out their company and continue to grow their presence across California.”

Aibot plans to create 700 full-time jobs and invest $494 million over the next five years, according to the company. 

"I’m delighted that Long Beach's Aibot was awarded a $15 million CalCompetes Grant, recognizing their green innovation and technological leadership,” said Mayor Rex Richardson. “This supports our city's economic growth and sustainability vision, and I'm proud of their contribution to our community."

This is the second California grant going to an electric aerial vehicle (EAV) company.

Go-Biz recently awarded $9.8 million to Joby Aviation to expand in California.

As part of that deal, Joby agreed to invest $41 million and create 690 additional full-time jobs in the state by 2027.

Joby has a partnership with Delta Air Lines with New York as one of its early launch markets once approved by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). 

The Joby four-passenger EAV is designed for rapid, back-to-back flights and can fly up to 100 miles on a single charge.

Traveling from Manhattan to JFK Airport could be done in seven minutes, according to the company. 

The Joby commercial passenger service is planned for 2025.

Joby recently delivered the first eVTOL vehicle to the Air Force at the Edwards Air Force Base in California, believed to be the first eVTOL taxi delivered in the U.S. as part of a $131 million contract between the Department of Defense and Joby.

In 2024, Aibot plans to introduce its first commercial unmanned EAV designed to serve different industries including cargo, agriculture, high-speed inspection and medical deliveries.

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About the Author(s)

Chuck Martin

Editorial Director AI & IoT

Chuck Martin, author of "Flying Vehicles," New York Times Business Bestselling author and futurist, is Editorial Director at Informa Tech, home of AI Business, IoT World Today and Enter Quantum. Martin has been a leader in emerging digital technologies for more than two decades. He is considered one of the foremost emerging technology experts in the world and his latest book title "Flying Vehicles" (The Emergence of Personal Air Travel, Flying Cars, and Air Taxis) followed "Digital Transformation 3.0" (The New Business-to-Consumer Connections of The Internet of Things).  He hosts a worldwide podcast titled “The Voices of the Internet of Things with Chuck Martin,” where he converses with top executives from the companies driving the adoption of emerging technology.

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