Bristow and Volocopter sign deal to launch eVTOL services


Bristow Group and Volocopter have signed an agreement to look at launching eVTOL passenger and cargo services in the US and UK.

As part of the deal, Bristow has placed a firm order for two VoloCity aircraft with an option to purchase a further 78 vehicles. Both parties will begin immediate cooperation to build an urban air mobility ecosystem including regulatory discussions and infrastructure exploration.

Dave Stepanek, chief transformation officer for Bristow said: “Launching this collaborative effort with Volocopter marks a major milestone in Bristow’s effort to usher in a new era of vertical transportation solutions. Volocopter has taken a pragmatic approach to certification with a simple and elegant initial aircraft design and is leading the pack in its efforts to bring their aircraft to market. We are looking forward to lending our 75+ years of innovation and expertise in bringing new aircraft into service and developing new markets side-by-side Volocopter.”

The joint development agreement covers the exploration of commercial, operational and eVTOL maintenance services. This includes adaptation of the VoloIQ, Volocopter’s digital platform, to suit Bristow’s future operations.

Volocopter expects to receive final certification from EASA in 2024, while concurrent certification from the FAA creates the potential to start commercial services in the US shortly thereafter.

Christian Bauer, chief financial officer, Volocopter, said: “Our partnership with Bristow and the firm VoloCity orders received propels us forward as we unlock new markets. With this collaboration, Volocopter surpassed 500 pre-orders accumulated including nearly 30 firm orders from reputational partners. I am filled with excitement toward the vast potential of the U.S. and U.K. markets and looking forward to working with Bristow’s experienced team as we prepare for operations.”