Beta Technologies Receives $368 Million Funding Push

Startup electric aviation company Beta Technologies has roped in $368 Million of funding from Amazon and Fidelity.

  • The funding puts Beta Technologies in ‘unicorn status,’ after a $1.4 billion valuation.
  • Fidelity offered to fund this round, but the amount was increased to allow for additional investment.
  • Beta continues to fight for FAA certification.

Aviation startup Beta Technologies continues to soar following a funding round that roped in $368 million. The investors? Amazon.com Inc. and Fidelity Management & Research Co.

Big investment like this puts Beta in what is known as ‘unicorn status.’ In other words, they have a lot of potential as an aviation startup, now valued at $1.4 billion.

In fact, Fidelity offered to fund the latest round, but the amount was ultimately increased, opening Beta up to new investment. This is when Amazon’s Climate Pledge Fund swooped in and exercised its interest.

“We support Beta Technologies’ mission to reshape air transportation through zero-emission aviation,” said Kara Hurst, vice president/head of worldwide sustainability at Amazon.

News of this kind will only rally more electric startups looking to take off. You see, the Vermont-based startup faces heavy competition from the likes of Boeing Co. and Textron Inc. Not to mention Joby Aviation, who went public earlier this year, complete with a $3.8 billion valuation.

Multiple orders have already been placed

UPS has already acquired 10 of the Alia-250c EVs to fly packages between locations. Could an Amazon craft follow a similar course?

Speaking of orders, the US Air Force has requested 60 aircraft from Beta Technologies. The first 30 craft is due to arrive in 2023, and the other 30 in 2024. Working with the Air Force on piloted craft only helps aid their FAA certification efforts.

“We were fortunate to have customers early on and have the internal funding to make it this far, which puts us in a wonderful position to maintain a focused path toward commercialisation.”
— Kyle Clark, CEO and founder of Beta Technologies

Last month, we covered the Beta Technologies/Blade Air Mobility announcement. Blade, a short-haul passenger flight company out of New York, placed an order of 20 EVAs from Beta, said to cut noise pollution significantly.

It would appear the Alia-250c has many uses as an eVTOL — otherwise known as an electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft. Two versions of the Alia are in the works: one for passengers, and the other, for cargo.

Who would you like to see Beta Technologies work with? We like the idea of a Beta/Uber collaboration, but what do you think?

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