Surf Air Mobility Lands IPO-linked Funding Boost

Surf Air Mobility, which was formed alongside Surf Air’s acquisition of aviation marketplace BlackBird earlier this year with the aim to accelerate zero-emission flight, recently announced a $200 million investment commitment from Luxembourg-based Global Emerging Markets Group (GEM) to take the company public. The $200 million commitment comes with an advance of $50 million, immediately available on the first day of trading; further tranches can then be drawn at the company’s option over a three-year period.

According to Surf Air Mobility, proceeds from the investment will be used to develop and acquire leading technologies in the zero-emission space. The funding from GEM will allow the company to continue adding organic growth, executing strategic new initiatives, and acquiring leading technology players in the space, said Surf Air Mobility CEO Sudhin Shahani.

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“The launch of Surf Air Mobility and our acquisition of aviation marketplace BlackBird were the first steps in our original goal to bring the benefits of private aviation to the masses,” he added. “Now, we look to help drive the industry’s inevitable electrification, as that will play a critical role in making private travel accessible to all.”

Fred Reid, former global head of transportation for Airbnb, comes on board as Surf Air Mobility’s new chief strategy officer. In a career that spans three decades, Reid guided the launch of Virgin America as founding CEO, served as president and COO for both Delta Air Lines and Lufthansa, and headed fractional provider Flexjet. Before his stint at Airbnb, Reid was the president of eVTOL startup Wisk, which is a partnership between Boeing and Kitty Hawk that is developing the Cora eVTOL aircraft.

Surf Air Mobility is also adding two members to the company’s board: Carl Albert, the former owner of Fairchild Dornier and founder of Wings West, and Edward Mady, the former head of Dorchester Group North America.

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