Electric air taxi firm launches big San Jose expansion and hiring mode

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SAN JOSE — An electric air taxi company has completed a leasing deal in San Jose that will enable the cutting-edge tech firm to soar into a local expansion and hire more workers.

Archer Aviation has leased an office and research building in north San Jose that’s about a half-mile away from the company’s current headquarters in the Bay Area’s largest city.

The company leased the entire building at 77 Rio Robles in San Jose, a complex that totals 68,300 square feet, according to documents filed with the Santa Clara County Recorder’s Office in early January.

The rental deal was confirmed by a spokesperson for Archer Aviation.

Archer Aviation’s electric air taxi, called Midnight, is seen with New York City skyline and Brooklyn Bridge in the background. (Archer Aviation)

Archer Aviation will retain its existing headquarters at 190 W. Tasman Drive even after it moves into the newly rented office on Rio Robles, the spokesperson said.

This means the deal represents an expansion for Archer Aviation, which is pushing ahead with plans to manufacture, mass-produce and deliver electric aircraft that can serve as flying taxis.

San Jose-based Archer also is in hiring mode as it operates in expanded San Jose facilities.

“We are continuing to expand the team as we gear up towards FAA Type Certification (targeted for the end of 2024) and commercial launch (targeted early 2025),” an Archer spokesperson said in comments emailed to this news organization.

The company’s aircraft is called “Midnight,” a flying electric vehicle that the company unveiled in November 2022.

Archer Aviation office and research building at 77 Rio Robles in San Jose.(George Avalos/Bay Area News Group)
Archer Aviation office and research building at 77 Rio Robles in San Jose. (George Avalos/Bay Area News Group)

The Midnight aircraft is a piloted, four-passenger electric vehicle that can take off and land vertically.

City officials embraced Archer’s San Jose expansion.

“Air taxis are a whole new and emerging industry,” said Nanci Klein, the city’s director of economic development. “Electric-powered aircraft are better for the environment, they are part of growing transit opportunities and short-haul transportation.”

Cushman & Wakefield commercial real estate brokers Nick Lazzarini, Kelly Yoder, Todd Beatty and Steven Horton have been marketing the 77 Rio Robles building that Archer Aviation has leased.

Archer Aviation recently landed a big boost when Stellantis, a Netherlands-based vehicle manufacturing titan, agreed to help Archer build its aircraft factory in Georgia as well as provide up to $150 million in equity financing for the aircraft upstart.

“We’ve been working closely with Archer for the past two years, and I am continually impressed by their ingenuity and unwavering commitment to deliver,” Carlos Tavares, chief executive officer with Stellantis, said in a prepared release at the time of the announcement of the Stellantis and Archer joint efforts.

Stellantis anticipates that it will be a long-term investor in Archer Aviation, the companies said.

“Our two companies are taking these important steps together to realize a once-in-a-generation opportunity to redefine urban transportation,” said Adam Goldstein, Archer Aviation’s chief executive officer and founder.

San Jose, in Klein’s view, is an ideal site for both up-and-coming and big tech companies.

“There is no place in the world that is faster than San Jose with innovating an idea and working through all of the steps for commercialization of that idea,” Klein said.

 

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