Astro Aerospace completes acquistion of air taxi peer Horizon Aircraft
Astro Aerospace Ltd (OTCQB:ASDN) has completed the acquisition of Horizon Aircraft, developer of an advanced electric vertical-take-off-and-landing vehicle.
The company announced that Patricia Trompeter, currently a member of Astro’s board, will be chief executive officer of the enlarged group, with Astro CEO Bruce Bent becoming executive chairman.
Trompeter, the company noted, brings more than 16 years of experience in mergers and acquisitions and 15 years in financial management experience, including a variety of executive positions at GE Capital, where she participated in over US$17bn in acquisitions and transactions.
Horizon co-founder and CEO Brandon Robinson has been appointed president of Astro Aerospace.
Earlier, Horizon published research showing that the general public will be willing to fly short journeys in air taxis only if they are proved to be totally safe.
Close to two-thirds (65%) of adults said they will fly in eVTOL air taxis once they are approved by regulators in their own country, according to a study of over 1,000 adults in 10 countries across North America, Europe, Africa and Asia-Pacific, falling to 61% for eVTOL taxis in other countries.
A cautious 16% of those surveyed said they would not fly in air taxis, with another 20% unsure.
Three out of four (76%) of those surveyed said worries about eVTOL safety would be the biggest deterrent for using air taxis while 69% would want reassurances about the training of pilots.
Canada-based Horizon’s eVOTL, the Cavorite X5, has “an additional layer of safety built into it”, it says, stemming from its split-wing design: if the pilot goes too slow or has to vertically take off and land, the wings open up and reveal six fans that turns the Cavorite into a helicopter that can stop in mid-air and then land and reverse.
Based in Dallas, Texas, Astro’s own eVTOL, named Elroy, was one of the first drones to seamlessly fly with humans on board.