Business jet operator ASL Group has signed a purchase agreement with Lilium for an initial six Lilium Jets, and will cooperate with the OEM to develop a network of landing sites across the Benelux region.
Having acquired two Pipistrel Velis Electros at the end of 2021, ASL became the owner of the first electric aircraft in Belgium. The group launched its RISE (Responsible Initiative for Sustainable Environment) programme in 2020 with the intention of reducing the company’s ecological footprint.
Owner and CEO Philippe Bodson says: “Our company is constantly seeking new ways to operate responsibly and contribute to a healthy future, both socially and ecologically. The Lilium Jet is a great opportunity to provide better value to our customers in a sustainable way. With zero operating emissions, vertical take off and landing capability and a spacious premium cabin, the Lilium Jet represents the best option on the market.”
Meanwhile, Helity Copter Airlines is to develop an eVTOL network in Andalusia, Spain. Under its agreement, Helity intends to initially purchase five Lilium Jets to provide premium and business charter flights to its customers.
Helity offers helicopter shuttle flights between Ceuta, Algeciras and Málaga as well as private charter flights in southern Spain. With approximately 300,000 passengers transported to date between Ceuta on the north coast of Africa and the Spanish peninsula, Helity provides a critical transportation service. The Lilium Jet, with its premium cabin, expected physical range of 250 km and anticipated performance capabilities in various weather conditions, is well suited to meet the transportation needs of the region.
Helity CEO and owner Antonio Barranco says: “With its zero operating emission and low noise profile, the Lilium Jet is a great addition to our existing helicopter fleet. Thanks to the large and spacious cabin, the aircraft is very well suited to address the premium and business traffic in the region. I have no doubt that in the medium term it will revolutionise the concept of short range commercial and business aviation.”
AAP Aviation Group is to develop an eVTOL network in Scandinavia with Lilium. Under the largest agreement of the three, AAP intends to purchase 40 Lilium Jets and collaborate with the OEM to identify and develop landing sites in the Scandinavian countries, starting with Norway.
AAP Aviation and Lilium expect the market for on-demand aviation services to grow rapidly, pending authority approval of aircraft models and route infrastructure.
CEO Espen Høiby says: “We have disrupted the aviation industry once before and are set do so again. Due to the mix of water, terrain and mountains, Norway is particularly suited to regional air mobility. With its vertical take off and landing capability, high speed and regional range, the Lilium Jet can achieve hours of time savings compared with today’s transportation modes. The Lilium Jet’s performance, its low noise profile and spacious cabin make it the ideal aircraft to develop sustainable air transport in Scandinavia.”
AAP Aviation entered the market in 2013. Offering a wide range of professional services for the aviation industry, including crew management, the company formerly known as OSM Aviation quickly established operations in 19 countries worldwide, counting more than 6,000 employees. Following a restructuring during the COVID-19 pandemic, AAP Aviation is well positioned to take a lead role in developing the next phase of sustainable regional air mobility.
Lilium ceo Daniel Wiegand says of the deals: “ASL Group is a truly innovative company with a vision to provide the best services for its customers, evaluating how to transform our industry to minimise CO2 emissions. Our aircraft performance and low noise profile will be a great addition to ASL's fleet. With the highest population density in Europe, the Benelux region represents a perfect use case for eVTOL transportation, and we are proud to support ASL's development in the region.
“Southern Spain attracts a high demand of premium tourism. Combined with Helity’s great local expertise and experience in the operation of helicopters, as well as the hiring of highly skilled pilots, we have ideal conditions for the development of a sustainable air mobility network in the region.”
He adds: “Norway is the world’s leader in sustainable practices, known to have the highest penetration of electric car ownership. Together with AAP’s operational expertise and knowledge of the region, we have the ideal conditions for an eVTOL revolution.”
Lilium is currently conducting flight tests with its fifth generation technology demonstrator at the ATLAS flight test centre in Villacarrillo, Spain.