Davis, CA, Jan. 24, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Moller International, Inc. (MI) (OTC-QB:MLER), the developer of the Skycar®and Neuera™ aircraft announced today that it has received a signed memorandum of understanding (MOU) agreeing to create a US-based Joint Venture (JV) with Athena Technologies Inc. of Harbor City, California. The goal of the newly formed JV is to establish co-production for its aircraft in the US and the People's Republic of China.
Under the provisions of the memorandum, MI will team with this US company-led JV to jointly produce numerous models of its vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) aircraft. The JV will initially invest $80 million (USD) of a planned $480 million investment with the objective of producing a variety of VTOL aircraft by 2014. Production will include the Skycar® 200 LS, Skycar® 400, Skycar® 600 and Neuera™ aircraft.
MI is to retain its Intellectual Property (IP) while providing the JV with aircraft designs, ready-to-install Rotapower® rotary aviation engines, and the requirements for the airframe and flight control system hardware to be produced in China. The JV is to provide all necessary production funding, purchase a 35% ownership in MI and provide MI with 25% fixed ownership in the JV for a period of 10 years.
"The formal agreement is expected to be approved by both parties within weeks and lead MI and its JV partner to becoming world leaders in Personal Airborne Transportation," said Dr. Paul Moller.
"This partnership leverages MI's practical knowledge of VTOL aircraft design with the cost-effective assembly and manufacturing capabilities that can be carried out overseas," said Bruce Calkins, MI's General Manager. "Our objective is to become the market leader in this form of Personal Aviation, and with this agreement we are in a great position to achieve that goal."
"We are very affirmative and optimistic about this JV opportunity. Moller's VTOL technology certainly is the very best in the world and we are looking forward to building a first class VTOL airplane factory in China," said John Gong, Chairman of Athena Technologies, Inc.
About Moller International
Moller International (OTC-QB:MLER) is a fully reporting public company that has developed a number of VTOL aircraft employing its Rotapower® rotary engines and flight control systems. Products in development and/or test are the Skycar® 400, Neuera™, and a recent 2-passenger model called the Skycar® 200 LS intended to qualify as a Light Sport Aircraft under existing FAA rules. The Company has other VTOL aircraft in development targeted at overseas markets for commercial and private applications.
The Skycar® has been featured on a number of TV programs including CBS 60 Minutes, "Highway In the Sky", NBC's Today Show "Today's American Story", and History Channel's, "Greatest Movie Gadgets: Then and Now" and numerous appearances on the Discovery Channel including the Smithsonian Institute'sInvention series.
About Athena Technologies
Athena Technologies is a consortium comprised of several US private equity funds and credit guarantee companies. It is currently focused on China-US trade relations and e-business networks where it provides a bridge between Chinese and US commerce by offering all aspects of international trade services.
Mr. John Gong, Chairman of Athena Technologies, is Vice-Director of the China Council for Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT) and Vice-President of the China Economic Trade Promotion Agency (CETPA). He has been featured on the front pages of "China Foreign Trade" and "China Economic & Trade Herald" magazines numerous times.