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Abu Dhabi advances future of coastal transportation with REGENT

Abu Dhabi advances future of coastal transportation with REGENT
25 Apr 2024 20:57


The Abu Dhabi Investment Office (ADIO) announced today its collaboration with electric pioneering seaglider maker REGENT to support and attract investment for the technology’s development and manufacturing at the Smart and Autonomous Vehicles Industry (SAVI) cluster located in Masdar City.

ADIO and REGENT signed the MoU on the sidelines of DRIFTx, Abu Dhabi’s smart and autonomous mobility transport event, which is taking place at the Yas Marina Circuit on 25 and 26 April.

The move is a key step in REGENT’s global expansion – serving an order book of over US9 billion all around the planet with the promise of drastically reducing the time and cost of moving people and goods between coastal cities. REGENT’s seagliders are all-electric, wing-in-ground-effect craft that operate dock-to-dock, over-water routes within a wingspan of the water's surface, combining the speed of an airplane with the operating cost and accessibility of a boat.

Built to the same safety standards as modern aircraft and watercraft, the seagliders will service routes up to 180 miles (300 km) with existing battery technology, with the potential to serve routes of up to 500 miles (800 km) once next-generation batteries become available, all using existing dock infrastructure.

REGENT will leverage the opportunity to utilise the SAVI cluster’s state-of-the-art facilities, services and enabling regulatory ecosystem, and will collaborate with ADIO to solicit the local support and investment required to expand its global operations in UAE, including workforce development, supply chain, integration and seaglider delivery infrastructure. In the current vision, REGENT is targeting a pilot operational campaign in the next few years, with plans for localised seaglider manufacturing by end of decade.

Badr Al-Olama, Director General of Abu Dhabi Investment Office (ADIO), said: “Abu Dhabi is deploying innovation at scale through its pioneering Smart and Autonomous Vehicle Industry cluster and we’re proud to welcome REGENT to Abu Dhabi to shape the future of coastal transportation. With immense speed and efficiency, I’m confident Abu Dhabi will see the global deployment of electric seagliders, and these will dramatically change how goods and people move between the world’s coastal areas going forward. As a leading hub for the development of future industries, we will leverage to stand at the very forefront of a new wave of disruptive change in mobility that is set to create tremendous opportunities for businesses over the next few decades. We look forward to supporting REGENT as we work through the details over the coming months to make our shared goal of localised seaglider operations and manufacturing a reality.”

Billy Thalheimer, co-founder and CEO of REGENT, said: “Abu Dhabi’s SAVI cluster represents an extraordinary opportunity for our company to simultaneously support our global expansion and fulfil the strong demand of our customers already in the region. With our growing backlog of $9B in seaglider orders rapidly spreading throughout the Gulf, the Red Sea, Indo-Pacific and Europe, we need a way to effectively manufacture and deliver seagliders across the Eastern Hemisphere. We have been thrilled by the dedicated and rapid support of ADIO, together with our existing investor EDGE’s SDF, as we work collaboratively to build a REGENT hub in Abu Dhabi.”

Since its establishment, Abu Dhabi’s SAVI cluster is setting the new standard for transportation and sustainable mobility, enabling global players to accelerate the development of air, land and sea applications by providing cutting-edge R&D and testing facilities. Bringing together the complete value chain in one cluster optimises synergies from shared technologies to promote the future of mobility in the UAE and beyond. It also reinforces Abu Dhabi’s leading regional position in attracting global innovators, entrepreneurs, investors and talent from innovative sectors to export locally developed, homegrown solutions to the world.

Source: WAM
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