Regent secures $60m in series A funding
REGENT Craft has raised $60m in its series A round, providing enough funding for a full-scale prototype build and test programme.
The round was co-led by 8090 Industries and Founders Fund and includes previously reported strategic injections from firms including Japan Airlines Innovation Fund and Lockheed Martin. The round, announced at UP.Partners annual UP.Summit, brings REGENT’s total funding to $90m.
Once its prototype is built, the Rhode Island-based firm plans to fly crewed tests in 2024 ahead of first deliveries in “mid-decade”. Coupling advanced technologies from hydro-foiling watercraft and electric aviation, seagliders operate like a boat when in the harbour, then take off from wave-tolerant hydrofoils and fly within one wingspan of the surface over open water. They can reach cruise speeds up to 180mph and cover distances up to 180 miles on a single charge.
“There are extraordinarily few companies today with battery powered vehicles that can fly human crew, and REGENT is about to join those ranks,” said Billy Thalheimer, co-founder and CEO. “Seagliders will be the first electric flying machine to be economically viable, and I’m willing to bet, the first one that the majority of the world will take a ride in.”
Thalheimer said he believes 8090 Industries is the perfect investor to lead the round: “Bringing a deep bench of industrial titans focused on sustainability, aerospace, and defense that will support scaling REGENT’s global footprint.”
Kerem Ozmen, co-founder and CEO of 8090 Industries, added: “Our two investment pillars are sustainability and aerospace and defence, and REGENT falls perfectly in the intersection. With about a quarter of the planet’s CO2 emissions coming from transportation, and with the sector growing faster than any other, the time to act with new technologies is now. REGENT will be one of, if not the first manufacturer in the advanced air mobility vertical to complete certification and bring their product to market.”
REGENT’s flagship seaglider, Viceroy, will carry 12 passengers up to the aforementioned 180 miles with existing battery technology. The firm’s vision product, Monarch, will carry 100 passengers on routes up to 500 miles.
REGENT said it has secured a commercial order book for over 500 seagliders representing more than $8bn from airline and ferry customers including Mesa Airlines, Brittany Ferries and FRS. The company recently announced that Southern Airways will take delivery of the first production Viceroy, which will operate under their Mokulele Airlines brand.
Delian Asparouhov, partner at Founders Fund, said: “REGENT is a once-in-a-generation company with the power to truly transform an entire sector. Their faster, cheaper, and cleaner solution for regional mobility is the first radical advance in transportation in decades. REGENT is a textbook example of the type of ambitious technologies we need to grow the U.S. industrial base and today we’re doubling down on our commitment to their vision.”