Vote on Vertical Aerospace SPAC Merger Set for Dec. 14

Approval would make it the fourth eVTOL company to go public this year.

Vertical says it now has more than 1,350 conditional pre-orders of its VX4 aircraft. Courtesy: Vertical Aerospace

Broadstone Acquisition Corp. (NYSE:BSN), a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), has announced a shareholders proxy vote on a merger with Vertical Aerospace that could take the air taxi company public in two weeks.

The meeting is scheduled to be held virtually and in New York on December 14. 

If approved, the merger would make U.K.-based Vertical the fourth electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft (eVTOL) company to go public this year. It will list on The New York Stock Exchange under the symbols “EVTL” and "EVTLW,” respectively, by December 16.

Strong Support from Investors

In June, Vertical announced that it would go public in a $2.2 billion SPAC deal, bolstered by a robust list of more than 1,350 pre-orders totalling $5.4 billion. Supporters include: 

  • American Airlines
  • Avolon
  • Bristow
  • Iberojet

The company also has conditional pre-order options from Virgin Atlantic and Marubeni.

Then in October, Vertical announced that it had received an additional $205 million in funding from Mudrick Capital & Kouros SA to support the development and certification of the VA-X4, as well as sustainable initiatives.

Mobility SPACs sputter this year

The deal could yield proceeds upwards of $394 million, although if Vertical’s competition is any indicator, shareholder redemptions could bring that number down.

In February, when Archer (NYSE:ACHR) and Atlas Crest Investment Corp. (NYSE:ACII) initially announced the merger plan, proceeds were expected to be about $1.1 billion. But during a vote in September, 48.5 percent of eligible shareholders exercised redemption rights, resulting in $242 million less in revenue. It was a similar story this summer for Lilium (NASDAQ:LILM) and Joby (NYSE:JOBY), who also saw dramatically lower proceeds.

Perhaps in response to the market’s lukewarm sentiment, Volocopter, another large, advanced air mobility company, canceled its SPAC-IPO plans this week.

For its part, Vertical had been radio-silent on its merger plans since announcing them in June, raising concerns that the company would not meet its year-end goal, or that the company was considering following Volocopter’s lead.

A look at the interior of Vertical Aerospace's VA-X4 aircraft. Courtesy: Vertical Aerospace

About The Aircraft

According to Vertical, the VA-X4 is being designed to be a 200 mph, single-pilot, four-passenger eVTOL aircraft, and will be 100 times quieter than a helicopter in cruise flight, with a range of more than 100 miles. 

By their timeline, the VA-X4 could be type certificated by 2024 with Heathrow Airport in London serving as an infrastructure launch partner.

Michael Wildes holds a master’s degree in Logistics & Supply Chain Management, and a bachelor’s degree in Aeronautical Science, both from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Previously, he worked at the university’s flight department as a Flight Check Airman, Assistant Training Manager, and Quality Assurance Mentor. He holds MEI, CFI & CFII ratings. Follow Michael on Twitter @Captainwildes.

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