Following the success of its public flight demo last week, SkyDrive has announced that it has raised ¥3.9 billion in Series B funding.

Seven of the ten investors – Development Bank of Japan, Itochu Corporation, ENEOS Innovation Partners, Obayashi Corporation, NEC Corporation, VeriServe Corporation and Sumitomo Mitsui Finance and Leasing Company – are all new.

ITOCHU Technology Ventures, Energy and Environment Investment and STRIVE have added additional investment following Series A funding. Other existing shareholders include DRONE FUND and Z Corporation. The amount equates to approximately $37 million

Commenting on the investment, Tomohiro Fukuzawa, Representative Director at SkyDrive, said: “SkyDrive will accelerate its technological and business development of flying cars and cargo drones to build a society with safe, secure, and comfortable air mobility solutions.

“On the technological front, our management of flying car development will progress from the engineering verification phase to the airworthiness verification phase with the aim of achieving a high degree of perfection of the aircraft’s body.”

Yasunori Yazaki, President of ENEOS Innovation Partners, added: “The company’s vehicles have the potential of fundamentally changing the next generation of urban air mobility, and are an exciting glimpse into the future. The ENEOS group will primarily focus on building the infrastructure for flying cars and drones and on creating an energy supply system for the vehicles to help create a sustainable new mobility service.”

As well as developing its SD-03 single-seater ‘flying car’, which is hoped to be available to buy in Japan from 2023, SkyDrive is also working to develop heavy-load specific cargo drones.

Fukuzawa added that the company will ‘continue to build and operate industrial models that can help overcome the challenges confronting our customers by providing a means of transportation in mountain areas.’

“We expect to expand our cargo drone service to urban areas in 2022 and beyond and to that end we will vigorously step up our efforts to build safe and secure aircraft and create the necessary service network to support that expansion,” he added.