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Vertical Aerospace Strengthens Leadership Team With Appointment of Senior Executive John Martin as Chief Financial Officer

27 January 2023
  • John brings thirty years’ experience of senior executive roles in large, international companies, most recently as CEO of Ferguson plc (formerly Wolseley plc), the FTSE 100 distribution business
  • John has served as CFO of Wolseley plc, Hays plc and Travelex Group, and is currently non-executive director of Ocado Group plc

Vertical Aerospace (Vertical) [NYSE: EVTL], a global aerospace and technology company that is pioneering zero-emissions aviation, today announces it has strengthened its executive leadership team with the appointment of John Martin as Chief Financial Officer (CFO). John joins Vertical after a successful thirty year career in senior operational and financial management roles of large, international businesses. John takes up the role at Vertical on 20 February 2023.

John contributed significantly to building profitability and generating shareholder value for several prominent businesses, helping transform them into high-growth market leaders, including FTSE 100 Ferguson plc (formerly Wolseley plc), FTSE 250 Hays plc and the private Travelex Group. John’s significant experience in strategic development and driving excellence in operational performance will allow him to provide unique support for Vertical's Founder & CEO, Stephen Fitzpatrick, in scaling the company through certification and industrialisation.

John is a Chartered Accountant and earlier in his career was Group Controller of The Stationary Office Group upon its privatisation in 1996, having earlier spent nine years at Arthur Andersen. John also served briefly as Chair of Countryside Properties plc. John currently serves as an independent non-executive director of Ocado Group plc, a market leading technology and robotics business, and member of the FTSE 100.

This announcement follows the resignation of Vinny Casey as Vertical’s CFO, effective 20 February 2023. Vinny will remain on Vertical’s Board as a non-executive director, and returns to OVO Energy, a leading independent UK energy supplier. As part of the evolution of the Vertical Board, Michael Cervenka has stepped down from the Board, effective from 26 January 2023, and has a new role in the business as Chief Technology Officer, focused on building Vertical’s future engineering and technology pipelines, as well as continuing to lead strategic supply chain partner activities.

Stephen Fitzpatrick, Founder and CEO of Vertical, commented, “I am delighted to welcome John to Vertical Aerospace. His experience leading public companies will be critical as we scale Vertical both to certification and industrialisation. John’s appointment further strengthens Vertical’s executive team to deliver the VX4 into entry into service and beyond. I would also like to thank Vinny Casey for his commitment to Vertical and look forward to continuing working with him on the Vertical Board.”

John Martin said, “I am delighted to be joining such an innovative and exciting company at this time. The experience that Vertical Aerospace has brought to the challenge of zero operating emissions urban air mobility is truly remarkable and I am really looking forward to supporting this world-class team in achieving its mission and building the future of sustainable aviation.”

About Vertical Aerospace

Vertical Aerospace is pioneering electric aviation. The company was founded in 2016 by Stephen Fitzpatrick, an established entrepreneur best known as the founder of the Ovo Group, a leading energy and technology group and Europe’s largest independent energy retailer. Vertical has focused on building the most experienced and senior team in the eVTOL industry, who have over 1,700 combined years of engineering experience, and have certified and supported over 30 different civil and military aircraft and propulsion systems.

Vertical’s top-tier partner ecosystem is expected to de-risk operational execution and its pathway to certification allows for a lean cost structure and enables production at scale. Vertical has a market-leading pre-order book by value for more than 1,400 aircraft from global customers creating multiple potential near term and actionable routes to market. Customers include American Airlines, Virgin Atlantic, Avolon, Bristow, Marubeni, Iberojet and FLYINGGROUP, as well as Japan Airlines (JAL), Gol, Air Greenland, Gozen Holding and AirAsia, through Avolon’s VX4 placements.

Having been issued with its Permit to Fly from the UK’s Civil Aviation Authority in September 2022, Vertical’s VX4 prototype has successfully undertaken piloted flight tests. The flight test programme will continue over the coming months, reaching higher altitudes and speeds, as well as demonstrating the transition from vertical to horizontal flight.

Vertical’s ordinary shares and warrants commenced trading on the NYSE in December 2021 under the tickers “EVTL” and “EVTLW,” respectively.

About the VX4 eVTOL Aircraft

The VX4 is projected to be capable of transporting a pilot and up to four passengers, traveling distances of 100 miles, and achieving top speeds of over 200 miles per hour, while producing minimal noise and zero operating emissions. The VX4 is expected to open up advanced air mobility to a whole new range of passengers and transform how we travel. Find out more: vertical-aerospace.com

Vertical Media Kit
Available here

Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Any express or implied statements contained in this press release that are not statements of historical fact may be deemed to be forward-looking statements, including, without limitation, statements regarding Mr Martin’s impact on Vertical’s executive leadership team as its Chief Financial Officer, expectations surrounding pre-orders and commitments, the features and capabilities of the VX4, certification and the commercialization of the VX4 and related timelines, the transition towards a net-zero emissions economy, expected financial performance and operational performance , as well as statements that include the words “expect,” “intend,” “plan,” “believe,” “project,” “forecast,” “estimate,” “may,” “should,” “anticipate,” “will,” “aim,” “potential,” “continue,” “are likely to” and similar statements of a future or forward-looking nature. Forward-looking statements are neither promises nor guarantees, but involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected, including, without limitation: Vertical’s limited operating history without manufactured non-prototype aircraft or completed eVTOL aircraft customer order; Vertical’s history of losses and the expectation to incur significant expenses and continuing losses for the foreseeable future; the market for eVTOL aircraft being in a relatively early stage; the potential inability of Vertical to produce or launch aircraft in the volumes and on timelines projected; the potential inability of Vertical to obtain the necessary certifications on the timelines projected; any accidents or incidents involving eVTOL aircraft could harm Vertical’s business; Vertical’s dependence on partners and suppliers for the components in its aircraft and for operational needs; the potential that certain of Vertical’s strategic partnerships may not materialize into long-term partnership arrangements; pre-orders Vertical has received for its aircraft are conditional and may be terminated at any time in writing prior to certain specified dates; any potential failure by Vertical to effectively manage its growth; the impact of COVID-19 on Vertical’s business; Vertical has identified material weaknesses in its internal controls over financial reporting and may be unable to remediate the material weaknesses; Vertical’s dependence on our senior management team and other highly skilled personnel; as a foreign private issuer Vertical follows certain home country corporate governance rules, is not subject to U.S. proxy rules and is subject to Exchange Act reporting obligations that, to some extent, are more lenient and less frequent than those of a U.S. domestic public company; and the other important factors discussed under the caption “Risk Factors” in our Annual Report on Form 20-F filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) on April 29, 2022, as such factors may be updated from time to time in Vertical’s other filings with the SEC. Any forward-looking statements contained in this press release speak only as of the date hereof and accordingly undue reliance should not be placed on such statements. Vertical disclaims any obligation or undertaking to update or revise any forward-looking statements contained in this press release, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, other than to the extent required by applicable law.

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