Lilium starts on the stock exchange

The air taxi producer makes its debut on the US Nasdaq on Wednesday.

It's the event of an otherwise news-poor week in the startup world: German air taxi maker Lilium is launching on New York's Nasdaq technology exchange. To do so, the German company has merged with a Spac called Qell. This Spac is an empty shell listed on the exchange and pumped full of shareholder money, which will flow to Lilium through the merger. In return, the company will be listed on the stock exchange. As of 9:30 a.m. German time Wednesday, that's the case.

The German start-up actually wanted to collect around 834 million US dollars, but has to reckon with around 300 million euros less, according to Handelsblatt research. The reason for this is that some Spac investors returned their shares before the takeover. They prefer not to invest their money in air taxis. With Spacs such a withdrawal is quite common, a large part of 70 to 90 percent of the investors usually gets out at this point, says a report by Citibank. With Lilium, after all, it's only 65 percent.

The company wants to use the money to push ahead with the production of its air taxis, in which the well-known investor Frank Thelen in Germany also believes. The Munich-based company wants to launch its first model on the market as early as 2024; by 2026, a single jet should already be generating five million US dollars per year, and the company is targeting sales of 5.9 billion US dollars by 2027.


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