Unum Aircraft Seating, a newcomer to the business-class seating sector, reports it has successfully closed a round of capital investment. The backing is an important step in the company’s path to official market entry as it kick-starts the next stages, including expanding its workforce, creating an initial factory blueprint, gaining initial product certifications, and investing in capital equipment to support initial production requirements.
The key investors gained in the investment round are Origin Capital and the Low Carbon Innovation Fund 2 (LCIF2), which will partner with Unum and support development plans across the business.
Chris Brady, founder and CEO of Unum (and previously CEO of Acro Aircraft Seating), said of the successful round: “This investment round has been a real vote of confidence in our vision to be the sustainable and credible alternative in business-class seating. With the support of our investors, we have exciting programme of development ahead of us across our product, teams and facilities – so watch this space.”
Aircraft seating specialists looking for a new career may be interested in joining Unum, which is looking to expand its team, with senior hires planned to build operations and the supply chain (adding to its existing suppliers), expansion of the design and certification teams in the works, and plans to take on ‘life support’ teams in readiness for an initial customer programme. The staff will also be kept busy working on Unum’s plans to expand its range of seating beyond its current Unum One and Unum OneHD designs.
David Wright, director of LCIF2 fund manager Turquoise International, said of his decision: “We were attracted to Unum’s commitment to place sustainability at the heart of its organisation – reducing embedded carbon within the seat by choosing the most sustainable materials available, and having an elegance and simplicity of design to reduce weight and therefore fuel burn over the life of the seat. Unum’s products will make a significant contribution to their customers’ journey to net zero.”
David Wright of LCIF2 will join Unum’s board of directors, as will Andrew McAuliffe, a venture partner at Origin Capital.
Tim de Vere-Green, founder and CEO at Origin Capital, added: “We have been very impressed by the capabilities and experience of Unum’s leadership team, their passion for the inflight cabin product, and their vision for the business as the credible alternative in premium-class seating. As the aerospace market swiftly recovers from the pandemic, and with the global aircraft fleet set to double in the next 20 years, we believe there are significant opportunities for Unum, which offers a great product, produced sustainably.”