Mar 19, 2024 - Economy

Exclusive: This electric aircraft CEO wants you to fly for the price of an Uber

JoeBen Bevirt speaks to a crowd

JoeBen Bevirt, founder and CEO of Joby Aviation Inc., speaks at the What's Next Summit on March 19. Photo: Ronald Flores

JoeBen Bevirt hopes to make his company's electric air taxis as cheap as hailing a rideshare, he told Axios' Joann Muller at the annual What's Next Summit in D.C. on Tuesday.

The big picture: Bevirt, the founder and CEO of electric air taxi developer Joby Aviation Inc., said he wants to make the electric air taxis "accessible to everyone."

What he's saying: "We want a price that's comparable to what you would pay for a taxi or an Uber," Bevirt said.

  • Bevirt said this type of aircraft is "not some science fiction reality that's going to happen far into the future." Instead, it is "happening right now."
  • The company, which Bevirt started in 2009, has set a goal to be at a run rate of an aircraft a month by the end of 2024.

Between the lines: Bevirt envisions a world where you get off a Delta flight and into one of Joby's air taxis "as seamlessly as possible."

  • "We're building vertiport infrastructure at JFK and LaGuardia and LAX to give that really fantastic customer experience of a tight integration between your Delta flight and your Joby flight," he said.

Flashback: Joby Aviation began partnering with Delta Airlines in October 2022, and the airline said it would invest up to $200 million in the electric air taxi company.

Zoom out: Bevirt is a serial entrepreneur who holds dozens of patents.

  • Prior to starting Joby Aviation, Bevirt co-founded laboratory robotics company Velocity11 in 1999, which Agilent Technologies acquired in 2007.
  • He also started Joby Inc. in 2005, which focuses on consumer products.

Go deeper: Delta investing up to $200 million in air taxi startup Joby Aviation

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