Jaunt Air Mobility and Vertiko Mobility sign agreement to bring urban air taxis to Quebec by 2026

Ver­tiko Mobil­i­ty and Jaunt Air Mobil­i­ty have signed a let­ter of intent for the pur­chase of more than 70 Jaunt Jour­ney air­craft and two hybrid air­craft, with an option for a fur­ther 25 units.

The air­craft will be acquired dur­ing the first five years of oper­a­tion of the Québec ver­ti­port net­work, with idea of trans­form­ing the let­ter of intent into a con­tract dur­ing Q2 2025, with oper­a­tions to begin in 2026.

Under the same agree­ment, Jaunt will also act as a pilot train­ing and air­craft main­te­nance part­ner with Ver­tiko. The 12 months between the con­tract sign­ing and the start of oper­a­tions will serve as a break-in peri­od. Train­ing of the 36 pilots need­ed to fly the first nine air­craft dur­ing the first year of oper­a­tions will also be con­duct­ed dur­ing this peri­od.

Éric Côté, Pres­i­dent of Jaunt Cana­da, is proud to see the elec­tric air trans­porta­tion ecosys­tem grad­u­al­ly tak­ing shape. He said: “Each new phase that we com­plete is a fur­ther step in the right direc­tion in posi­tion­ing Québec as a leader in this new mar­ket seg­ment. The favourable envi­ron­ment we’re cre­at­ing ben­e­fits not only us but also all of the play­ers who will be involved in defin­ing this tran­sit mode of the future.”

Ver­tiko Mobil­i­ty is a Québec-based com­pa­ny found­ed in 2021, backed by a hold­ing com­pa­ny and local investors. Its mis­sion is to recon­nect Québec’s regions to its urban cen­tres by build­ing a net­work of ver­ti­ports span­ning the province along with local large-city net­works.

The com­pa­ny says its approach is dis­tinct from those of oth­er inter­na­tion­al ver­ti­port net­work devel­op­ers. For Ver­tiko, the suc­cess­ful build­out of its net­work is par­tic­i­pa­tion by real estate pro­mot­ers, who have a vest­ed inter­est in retain­ing own­er­ship of their rooftops and the ver­ti­ports to max­imise eco­nom­ic val­ue and attrac­tion ben­e­fits across their real estate devel­op­ments.

To meet the oper­a­tional objec­tives for the first year of the Ver­tiko Mobil­i­ty net­work, five ver­ti­ports will need to be built between now and the end of March 2025. Ini­tial expres­sions of inter­est for ver­ti­port con­struc­tion have come from ICAR in Mirabel, ODEA Mon­tréal (investors CREECO and COGIR) and a new real estate devel­op­ment in Val‑d’Or (pro­mot­ers Immeubles Qua­tro and Krak­en Man­age­ment).

Yan­nick Richard, exec­u­tive vice-pres­i­dent, and John Val­ley, pres­i­dent of Ver­tiko Mobil­i­ty, said the com­pa­ny is proud to accom­pa­ny Jaunt in the real­i­sa­tion of its objec­tives, while high­light­ing Que­bec know-how in the process.

Val­ley added: “It is the desire to devel­op an unknown mar­ket with our own rules of the game (Blue Ocean Strat­e­gy) that is at the ori­gin of Ver­tiko Mobil­i­ty. Jaunt Air Mobil­i­ty is one of the key ele­ments of this strat­e­gy.”

For Jaunt Air Mobil­i­ty, this is the fourth such inter­na­tion­al agree­ment in a few short months. To ful­fil its com­mit­ments, the com­pa­ny must first obtain cer­ti­fi­ca­tion for its final mod­el. Test­ing of the next pro­to­types is expect­ed to begin in 2023, with man­u­fac­tur­ing to get under way in 2025.

The Jaunt Jour­ney is tar­get­ing cer­ti­fi­ca­tion per exist­ing stan­dards for rotor­craft under Chap­ter 529 of the Trans­port Cana­da Cana­di­an Avi­a­tion Reg­u­la­tions rein­forces the fea­si­bil­i­ty of cer­ti­fi­ca­tion by 2026. 

It is the world’s first elec­tric air­craft com­bin­ing heli­copter and aero­plane flight capa­bil­i­ties. Jaunt has teamed with Tier One avi­a­tion part­ners to devel­op the Jour­ney and will work with glob­al oper­a­tors to pro­vide this new form of trav­el.

On March 10, 2022, Jaunt became a whol­ly owned sub­sidiary of AIRO Group Hold­ings, Inc. (The AIRO Group). The AIRO Group will bring togeth­er decades of indus­try-lead­ing tech­nol­o­gy with its group com­pa­nies to pro­vide best-in-class prod­ucts and ser­vices unique­ly capa­ble of address­ing a wide spec­trum of aero­space mar­kets.

The AIRO Group lever­ages tech­nolo­gies that span data sys­tems, resup­ply pack­age deliv­ery, mil­i­tary aero­space train­ing, mil­i­tary, and com­mer­cial manned/unmanned air­craft sys­tems, and avion­ics tech­nolo­gies.

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Jason Pritchard

Jason Pritchard is the Editor of eVTOL Insights. He holds a BA from Leicester's De Montfort University and has worked in Journalism and Public Relations for more than a decade. Outside of work, Jason enjoys playing and watching football and golf. He also has a keen interest in Ancient Egypt.

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