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South Korea's KakaoMobility selects Archer Aviation as eVTOL partner

Sumit Vishwakarma
New Update

Archer Aviation Inc, a leading company in electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft, and KakaoMobility, South Korea's top mobility as a service (MaaS) provider, have signed an agreement to collaborate in the K-UAM Grand Challenge.

The agreement also includes KakaoMobility's planned purchase of up to 50 of Archer’s Midnight eVTOL aircraft, valued at approximately $250 million, which includes pre-delivery payments.

KakaoMobility plans

KakaoMobility plans to own and operate Archer’s Midnight aircraft in Korea, offering electric air taxi flights to its over 30 million registered users on its Kakao T mobile app starting as early as 2026.


KakaoMobility and Archer anticipate starting the service in Seoul, one of the most congested cities in the world, where the average commuter spends nearly 90 minutes per day stuck in traffic.

KakaoMobility, along with its consortium partners LG UPlus Corp. and GS E&C, have chosen Archer as their eVTOL aircraft partner to ensure they reach their goal of conducting public demonstration flights with eVTOL aircraft in the country in late 2024.

KakaoMobility will pay Archer $7 million in 2024 as the first installment to help fund early commercialization efforts in Korea, followed by a second installment in Q1 2025. 

Leadership comments

Christopher SungWook Chang, Senior Vice President of KakaoMobility, said: “Our partnership with Archer is a leap forward for urban mobility. We can’t wait to debut Archer’s Midnight Aircraft at the K-UAM Grand Challenge in 2024 as a commitment to transforming the daily commute for millions of Kakao T users. The vision is clear – reduce the hours lost in traffic and elevate everyday travel with an electric air taxi service that features Archer’s Midnight aircraft.” 

Archer’s Chief Commercial Officer Nikhil Goel, commented: “Archer is expanding its international launch strategy to South Korea through this landmark partnership between Archer Aviation and KakaoMobility. Together, we are committed to revolutionizing transportation with Archer’s eVTOL aircraft, ushering in a future of cleaner, faster, and more efficient travel between and within Korean cities.” 

Working collaboratively to integrate all-electric air taxis

The consortium’s complementary strengths allow it to collaborate to build a comprehensive approach to integrating all-electric air taxis into South Korea's urban transportation landscape. Starting with the K-UAM Grand Challenge, the companies intend to demonstrate how eVTOL aircraft can transform daily commutes in Korea.

The partnership will also focus on building best-in-class infrastructure, including vertiports and air traffic management systems, to ensure safe and efficient operations. 

The consortium is focused on bringing electric air taxis to Korea because they can play a pivotal role in achieving a more sustainable future, contributing to South Korea’s broader goals of reducing carbon emissions and promoting green technology.