Beta Technologies Lands $169M Federal Loan to Build its Electric Planes

Source: VTDigger

Federal officials have granted a $169 million loan to Beta Technologies, the South Burlington electric aircraft manufacturer, aimed at bolstering the company’s capacity to build its planes for buyers throughout the Asia-Pacific region. 

The “export promotion loan” from the U.S. Export-Import Bank will support 400 jobs at Beta’s newly christened production facility at the Patrick Leahy Burlington International Airport, according to Lexi Pace, a company spokesperson. The loan also will support some costs associated with the plant itself, Pace said in an email Friday. 

Beta received the loan based on its “high growth potential” stemming from current and possible new contracts in countries including New Zealand, India, Japan and Canada, according to a Friday press release from the Export-Import Bank. The federal agency offers credit to U.S. companies to help them be more competitive in international markets. 

“We are proud to play a role in this project,” Rita Jo Lewis, president and chair of the Export-Import Bank, said in the release, adding that she thinks Beta is “leading the world in clean energy technological advancement and innovation.” 

Lewis announced the funding with Kyle Clark, Beta’s CEO, during a session of the U.S. Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in San Francisco.

“This is not only a vote of confidence in the work BETA is doing to electrify aviation,” Clark said in the release, but also will “help us create hundreds of well paid, climate-focused jobs in the coming years as we move toward large scale manufacturing and production of our electric aircraft.”

BETA plans to manufacture and assemble airplanes for both commercial and military customers at the 188,500-square-foot South Burlington site. The facility is capable of producing up to 300 aircraft per year, Clark said last month, although he doesn’t anticipate hitting that level of production until about 2027.

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