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German Flying Taxi Startup Joins Unicorn Club With New Funding

Sarah Syed

(Bloomberg) -- A German startup that’s making an all-electric vertical takeoff and landing passenger jet became a billion-dollar “unicorn” after raising $35 million from Baillie Gifford & Co., the largest investor in Tesla Inc. after its billionaire owner Elon Musk.

Lilium’s new funding came with a post-money valuation of more than a billion dollars, according a person familiar with the situation, who asked not to be identified as the details are private.

The new money brings the startup’s total investment to date to more than $375 million, the company said in a statement Tuesday.

“The funds raised during this round give us the security to weather the challenging economic landscape we see around us and we’re grateful to be able to stay fully focused on our mission,” Lilium Chief Financial Officer Christopher Delbrueck said.

Co-founded in 2015 by four engineers, Daniel Wiegand, Sebastian Born, Matthias Meiner and Patrick Nathen, Munich-based Lilium employs more than 450 people and will continue to grow with additional hires, said Wiegand, who’s also the firm’s chief executive officer.

He added that the company’s mission since inception has been to create a transportation system that’s accessible to everyone and not just to be used as a toy for the rich.

Existing investors in Lilium include Atomico, Tencent Holdings Ltd and Freigeist.

Read more: Jet-Powered Flying Taxi Unveiled Following First Flight

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