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12 December, 2013 - 11:57 By Tony Quested

Cloud meets crowd in e-Go cash call


High flying aviation technology startup e-Go aeroplanes is bidding to raise extra growth cash on a new crowdfunding platform launched by Cambridge UK neighbour SyndicateRoom.

The funding would underpin production of e-Go’s maiden aircraft for global sale.

The business says it is launching on  to allow its many supporters and anyone else interested the opportunity to become a shareholder and part of “an exciting development journey.”

The move follows significant and continuing interest in the eye-catching e-Go concept from potential investors and customers. This interest has heightened since the successful first flight of the prototype in mid-October.

Twenty investors backed e-Go aeroplane’s launch in 2011, among them UK aerospace leader Marshall of Cambridge. Approximately half of the new funding call has already come from existing investors, confirming their on-going support for and the project. Now, via SyndicateRoom, new investors can join them for as little as a £500 stake.

Flight trials and ground testing of the e-Go prototype continues as a prelude to starting production in the fourth quarter of 2014. Customer deliveries are planned for first quarter 2015 at a sales cost of around £50,000 + VAT.

The basis of the e-Go design philosophy is the packaging of leading edge aeronautical engineering with proven technology, some adapted from other, non-aviation, industries: the design’s airframe benefits from techniques used to produce the monocoques of F1 race cars, the avionics, datalogging and engine management are connected by a CANbus, common on today’s road cars.

The 30 hp powerplant is an adaptation of the Wankel engine by Rotron for UAVs (unmanned air vehicles). Currently, e-Go has exclusive use of this engine for manned aircraft. Including all ancillary equipment, the engine weighs just 23kg and delivers 60 mpg from garage forecourt fuel.

“The e-Go ethos is to do a lot with a little and that will remain our guiding principle,” said Malcolm Bird, e-Go’s executive chairman.

“The UK is unique in offering such a supportive deregulated environment for aircraft of this type, so new investors can look forward to an exciting time in helping bring to market a design that is innovative, striking in appearance, fun to fly and will cut dramatically the cost of personal flying.”

e-Go reports that interest in the product is high and says it already has first deposits for aircraft that will be delivered in 2015.

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