Avantto plans US$250 million investment in “flying cars”, says CEO

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Largest company in sharing helicopters and executive planes in Brazil, Avantto wants to be one of the pioneers in air transport by eVTOLs, air vehicles also called “flying cars”, which will soon be part of the landscape of large urban centers around the world.

In an interview with CNN Brasil Business, Rogério Andrade, CEO of Avantto, spoke about the expectations and plans of the company, which recently ordered 100 eVTOLs from Eve, the subsidiary of Embraer, which is expected to start delivering the devices in mid-2026. “We are excited to start this new business .”

Below are the main excerpts from the interview:

Why did Avantto choose Embraer’s eVTOL?

There are a few reasons. The first is that we have had an established relationship with Embraer for many years. Avantto is the largest Embraer private aviation operator in Latin America. We now have the largest fleet of Phenom jets in the region. We know Embraer’s ability to design and manufacture quality products.

The second reason has to do with Embraer’s successful experience in homologating flying machines, and this is not an easy task.

A third very relevant point is the reliability of Embraer products. When we talk about this topic, we can highlight some aspects. One is whether the equipment will be able to take off whenever you need it, which we call dispatchability. Another point is to be able to be assertive in defining operating costs. The operator needs to have predictability or else the business goes down the drain.

Last but not least, we are talking about a national product. The support offered by Embraer here in Brazil is of high quality. It is easy to obtain replacement parts, as the factory is right next door. We still have the opportunity to actively participate in the final phase of eVTOL development.

And just having the equipment is not enough. The eVTOLs will require the creation of physical infrastructure to receive the landings and take-offs of aircraft and a new state-of-the-art airspace control system that will allow the autonomous operation of the eVTOLs. Embraer, through Eve, is also working on these fronts. It will be a great learning experience for us and for Embraer.

How much does Avantto plan to invest in the eVTOLs sector?

The business plan is still being defined, but we can already put forward some numbers. Each eVTOL costs around $2.5 million. So, investments in eVTOLs alone are US$ 250 million.

Most likely, we will have a financial intermediary who will lease the aircraft to Avantto. We make the order to guarantee the units, and then we will make the financial design for the acquisition of the eVTOLs. This is very common in the aviation world.

How is Avantto preparing to make its debut in transporting eVTOLs?

The acronym eVTOL in English stands for Electric Aircraft for Vertical Takeoff and Landing. The helicopter is therefore a VTOL vehicle. It just isn’t electric. Avantto has long experience in helicopter operations. We are the world’s largest urban helicopter operator. This gives us a huge competitive advantage. We’re going to do the same thing with eVTOLs, but on a larger scale and for a much larger potential audience.

In which cities does Avantto intend to implement eVTOL services?

Our agreement with Embraer is to implement eVTOLs across Latin America. Obviously, São Paulo is the city with the greatest potential demand in the region, soaring. Rio de Janeiro also has good potential demand, as does Mexico City.

São Paulo has the capacity to have more than 500 eVTOLs in circulation. In Rio de Janeiro, around 200 devices. By mid-2030, five years after the start of flights with eVTOLs, capitals in Latin America will be able to host around 1,500 eVTOLs. Our order for 100 aircraft is just the beginning. The trend is for more aircraft to come.

Can eVTOLs replace helicopters?

In the short term, no. The flying range of eVTOL is much shorter than that of the helicopter. Our helicopter-sharing customers, for example, often take trips to their country or beach homes. eVTOL does not yet have the autonomy for such a mission. This could take years yet. The big limiting factor for eVTOL today, in terms of range, is the battery. It is necessary to develop a battery with greater energy storage capacity.

Is Avantto’s aircraft sharing business model viable with eVTOLs?

Yes. The concept of eVTOL is the same as other modes of transport. You can take your car, ride a taxi, Uber or bus. An eVTOL that follows regular routes will be like a bus. In occasional use, from point A to point B outside the regular routes, eVTOL works like a taxi or Uber. In the future, anyone who wants an eVTOL to go to the country house or beach will be able to have their own model or shared on demand in a more exclusive way.

Avantto is creating new business verticals. eVTOL will be the means of transportation for some of them, and helicopters and planes for others. The front where we operate today is private air mobility. With eVTOLs, in this first round, we will enter the area of ​​urban air mobility, which is the range it allows. Going forward, with eVTOL gaining more flight autonomy, it enters the area of ​​long-distance air mobility.

With these advances, I think eVTOLs will compete with regional aviation. Then, when the range gets too high, commercial aviation will eventually start using them. When they have greater autonomy and greater passenger capacity, eVTOLs can enter private aviation.

Reference: CNN Brasil

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