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Embraer’s flying taxi partners with Kenya Airways

written by Isabella Richards | August 12, 2021
Embraer’s Eve and Kenya Airways collaborate to study flying taxi’s (Embraer)

Brazilian planemaker Embraer’s Eve and Kenya’s flag carrier have partnered to study the future of air-taxis and garner “air mobility” access within the African market.

Eve Urban Air Mobility Solutions signed the memorandum of understanding with Kenya Airways’ subsidiary Fahari Aviation on Thursday, according to Embraer.

The collaboration will establish how to safely execute the development eVTOL’s into the market, while providing sustainable solutions for passengers in Kenya.

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“We are thrilled to partner with Kenya Airways to provide new forms of air mobility throughout the region for both people and goods,” said president and CEO of Eve, Andre Stein.

Stein said the partnership will “foster long-term mobility strategies” for the region, especially within the post-pandemic recovery.

Efforts to fly zero-carbon emission aircraft has been at the forefront of numerous airlines’ strategies this year, as electric aircraft continues to boom.

Industry leaders have heralded electric aircraft will be the solution to an increasingly sustainable-focused consumer environment.

Fahari Aviation, the unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) division of Kenya Airways, will support Eve’s product development process of the flying taxi.

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Eve’s 100 per cent electric aircraft is designed for reducing emissions and cutting travel times “by up to 90 per cent turning an hour and a half ride into six minutes”, according to the statement.

Eve will assist Fahari in establishing its network in the region and collaborate on abiding by the Urban Air Traffic Management (UATM) regulations in Kenya.

“Partnerships are vital in mapping out the future of our airline, something which the global crisis has reinforced,” said Allan Kilavuka, group managing director and CEO of Kenya Airways.

“With this partnership, we look to develop innovative air mobility solutions for our clients in Kenya and throughout the region.”

Africa took a big hit from last year when the pandemic began, losing US$7.7 billion in the aviation sector according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA).

Kenya Airways received US$65 million in government funding, and according to Eways Aviation, the carrier has adopted new strategies focusing on drone applications during the recovery.

The airline is veering away from solely receiving revenue from scheduled flights, instead streaming income from future-focused investments.

The first flight of Eve’s eVTOL within a simulator took place in Brazil in June last year, with more flights planned for later in 2021.

Halo, the launch customer of Eve has 200 of the air-taxis on order for entry into service by 2026.

Last week, German air taxi manufacturer Lilium announced a US$1 billion commercial deal with Brazilian airline Azul as part of its sustainability efforts to fly zero-carbon emission aircraft.

The deal will include Azul purchasing 220 of Lilium’s jets, the single largest eVTOL.

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