Britten-Norman and Cranfield Aerospace Solutions (CAeS) have revealed plans to merge and establish a UK-based original equipment manufacturer (OEM) for zero-emissions aircraft, aiming to commence flights by 2026.
It is expected that by mid-2023, the merger will be concluded. It follows a recent funding round that raised up to £10 million, with HydrogenOne Capital Growth contributing up to £5 million once the merger is complete. Cranfield University and Motus Ventures still retain shares, and Britten-Norman’s current owners, including lead investor Alawi Zawawi, will join the new company.
Both companies previously collaborated on the hydrogen demonstrator Project Fresson, which secured over £14 million in private funding from global investors and backing from the UK government through the UK Aerospace Technology Institute.
The Islander, Britten-Norman’s nine-seat aircraft, has been used by operators globally for inter-island services and short-hop operations. In contrast, CAeS plans to use the merger to create a new aircraft design that is optimised for hydrogen fuel cell technology. The new company will strive to maintain a fully sustainable supply chain and achieve zero-emissions flight. It most likely will attract investment from both the public and private sectors.
The company is a British aircraft manufacturer based on the Isle of Wight, England. The company was founded in 1953. It is best known for its Islander and Defender twin-engine aircraft, used worldwide for various missions, including passenger transport, cargo delivery, surveillance, and military operations. Britten-Norman has a long history of innovation and has been involved in several research and development projects to improve the performance and capabilities of its aircraft. The company also provides maintenance, repair, and overhaul services for its aircraft and those of other manufacturers.
Britten-Norman has a global customer base, with its aircraft operating in over 120 countries. Today, it continues to be a leader in the aviation industry, focusing on sustainability and the development of new technologies for zero-emissions flight.
About Cranfield Aerospace Solutions
Cranfield Aerospace Solutions (CAeS) is a British company that provides a range of aerospace solutions and services to clients in the aviation industry. The company was founded in 1946 as the College of Aeronautics and has since grown into a leading provider of aerospace engineering, testing, and consultancy services.
Its services include aircraft modification and maintenance, systems integration, aerodynamic design, flight testing, and research and development. The company also operates a fleet of research aircraft used for flight testing and research purposes.
In addition to its aerospace services, CAeS has a strong focus on sustainability and has developed several innovative technologies to reduce aircraft emissions and improve environmental performance.
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