eVTOL Insights can exclusively reveal that EHang will become the first eVTOL aircraft company to launch urban air mobility operations in Thailand, after it announced a major partnership with conglomerate CP (Charoen Pokphand) Group.
Speaking to a source familiar with the topic, eVTOL Insights was told this agreement with CP Group can make Thailand a significant market for urban air mobility. The deal includes the potential for a four-digit number of EHang’s logistics and passenger-carrying AAV models to be delivered over the next two years.
An official announcement with more details will be made next week, but the source also added that type certification for its EH216 aircraft from the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) is expected to be announced ‘in the next couple of months’.
CP Group is a major brand in the Asia-Pacific region. It comprises multiple businesses which operate in multiple industries and is described as Thailand’s largest private company. It holds controlling stakes in Chareron Pokphand Foods, the world’s largest producer of feed, shrimp and a global producer of poultry and pork, among other agricultural products.
It also operates Southeast Asia’s largest retail business by revenue and is the sole operator of 7-Eleven stores in Thailand, with more than 12,000 in operation, the second largest in the world. With all this in mind, the company will undoubtedly play a key role in helping to scale up operations in the region.
Thailand is also one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, with an estimated 25 million people visiting each year. EHang will no doubt use this opportunity to showcase the benefits of its eVTOL technology to more people, especially after the numerous flight demos it has conducted in China, Japan and Korea. It has also conducted similar flights in Europe, including Austria and Estonia.
And in Indonesia, it showcased the EH216’s sightseeing capabilities after completing a five-minute flight demonstration at the Villa Blackstone Beach in Bali.
This latest announcement adds to the growing number of countries that EHang is working with the bring urban air mobility to the Asia-Pacific region. Earlier this month, the company signed a partnership with AEROTREE in Malaysia, in what was described as its biggest pre-order for its eVTOL aircraft.
As well as Malaysia, EHang has received pre-orders from AirX in Japan to support UAM projects across the country, which was also the first to place an order for EHang’s VT-30 aircraft.
A live announcement on the news is expected to be made later this month.