– The air taxi company Lilium is expected to be listed on the US technology exchange Nasdaq from next Wednesday. The shareholders of the special purpose vehicle Qell Acquisition Corp. approved the proposed merger with Lilium by a large majority. The so-called Special Purpose Acquisition Company (SPAC) shares are already traded on the stock exchange. However, two-thirds of shareholders saw their installments paid before the transaction.
Lilium is developing the seven-seater Lilium Jet. The electric plane will be used on regional routes and will get travelers to their destinations faster than cars and trains. Among other things, Lilium wants to set up a network of feeder roads at the airports of Munich and Nuremberg. The first commercial flights are expected to take place in 2024.
Following the IPO, the start-up is now receiving much less money than initially expected. Lilium had calculated US $ 830 million, now it’s down to US $ 583 million. The company, based in Oberpfaffenhofen near Munich, is not the only one in the industry where a PSPC transaction has not been as successful as hoped. US competitor Joby Aviation earned just over $ 1 billion in August. About 1.6 billion were planned.
With the completion of the merger and the stock market listing, former Airbus boss Tom Enders will take over the chairmanship of Lilium’s board of directors. Brazilian-American entrepreneur David Neeleman and former Airbus CEO Henri Courpron also join the committee.
Neeleman founded the airlines Jet Blue and Breeze Airways in the United States and the airline Azul in Brazil. In August, the company issued a letter of intent to purchase 220 Lilium Jets, which is to be converted into a legally binding contract by the end of the year. Azul wants to build a network of regional connections in addition to the traditional airline. The first Lilium Jets will initially be used in Germany and the US state of Florida.
Lilium hadn’t announced the larger seven-seat version of the plane until March. A forerunner was smaller and only had five seats. One of the prototypes had been destroyed due to a battery fire. In the meantime, however, flight tests would again take place with a new demonstrator. Lilium does not comment on details of the subsequent schedule and has so far only posted short, soundless videos of previous flights. In order to gain approval in 2024, the production version is expected to make its maiden flight towards the end of 2022.