29 January 2016

This newsletter is focused on the recent marketing activities of Martin Aircraft Company to give shareholders the background behind the recent announcements and also to outline how a marketing and sales cycle works within the aviation business with our target First Responder customers. The update covers a number of other topics including an overview of manned flight display in China, announcement of the formation of “Iron Man” clubs in China, and our participation at Intersec 2016 in Dubai.

The next newsletter will highlight some of the technical achievements to date and update shareholders on the production set up progress. 


Update on Sales Initiatives for 2016

As detailed in previous shareholder updates and the recent AGM, Martin Aircraft Company is deploying a beachhead marketing strategy focused initially on the First Responder market. This “chasm crossing” best practice model, is a tried and tested route for marketing distributive technology into mainstream markets, particularly those customers who are quite traditional and have long procurement cycles.We are deploying this model through a two tier approach, both acting directly with First Responder clients and, when appropriate, establishing Alliance Partnerships with approved distributorships to secure market reach and penetration.

As a pre-revenue company, we are critically aware of the need to populate the order book and lock in production runs so as to match customers with jetpacks and jetpack products as they are delivered off the production line later in 2016.Again using a standard process for aviation manufacturers, working alongside early adopter customers, we enter into Letters of Intent (LOI). After a process of negotiation and requirement defining, we revise the LOI into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) which further defines the outlined commercial terms and confirms practical elements such as training and licence requirements with the aviation authorities of each country. The final step is the all-important Contract (Sales/Lease Agreements, Provision of Services) which may, in addition to jetpack orders, include future options for additional aircraft and products etc.

As with many government organisations, First Responder’s budgeting cycles and procurement processes can be traditionally lengthy so we seek to address this in two ways. Firstly, we ensure our jetpacks feature in front of the key decision makers as early as we can, many of whom are unaware that such technology is about to be delivered to market, and indicate what capabilities it can provide as a tactical air asset. Such examples were the recent Airshows in Paris, Czech Republic and Dubai. We will continue to attend airshows where we know our target audience attends. We also attend speaking opportunities and demonstrate capability at select conferences using our simulators & jetpacks. Such is the pulling power of the Martin Jetpack that we are able to secure our place at major marketing events, some of which have been and will be as a guest of the hosting organisation.

To accelerate the procurement process and also manage the successful outcomes required by all stakeholders, Martin Aircraft Company will be working with a number of early adopter service providers using a “package of capabilities” approach. This will allow us to deploy and integrate jetpack operations into their traditional fleet using initially a type of leasing model that provides jetpacks, simulators, spare parts, training, people and process to ensure operational success. This platform capability model is quite common in the aviation industry and enables early adopters the opportunity to commence jetpack operations and technology transfer on an operational expenditure, basis before committing to capital expenditure which is often more budget restrained and time consuming to obtain.

The company plans to establish 3 or 4 of these beachhead customers globally over the next 12 to 18 months to meet our sales forecasts and once they have been successfully implemented, we will commence with the break-out phase, with sales to both commercial and personal jetpack markets from 2017 and onwards.

Up until now the marketing team within Market Aircraft Company has been very small as the emphasis has been on resourcing the technical design team and flight operations division. To support the growing marketing strategy the Sales & Marketing department has commenced a planned surge in resourcing with a number of key hires currently being made. In addition, the team is working through a programme of events and attendance at shows which will lead up to the much anticipated global unveiling of the commercial jetpack later in the year, for which planning is now well underway.


MJP to develop high rise firefighting capabilities

During the period 17-19 January 2016 Martin Aircraft Company was hosted by the Dubai Civil Defence on their stand at Intersec 2016. The Intersec exhibition is one of the world’s largest fire and security conferences, held each year in the Dubai World Trade Centre. It brings together the global leaders in first responder products and services, mainly in the fire sector with decision makers and key industry bodies.

This year’s event was no different, and the opportunity to work in close collaboration with Dubai Civil Defence, who are the Emirates’ Fire and Rescue service provider, afforded Martin Aircraft Company unparalleled access to both regional and international buyers. With the assistance of our hosts, we were able to introduce our innovative aircraft and its capabilities to an important target market.

With the recent events of the New Year’s Eve fire at “The Address” tower in Dubai still very much front of mind, much attention was given during the show to the challenges of high rise fires and the potential of the Martin Jetpack to solve many of these problems.

His Highness Sheikh Mansoor bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who himself attended the fire on New Year’s eve in support of the Fire Service staff, was provided a personal tour of the Martin Jetpack and Simulator by Major General Rashid Thani Al Matroushi, Director-General of Civil Defence and Lt Col Expert Ali Hassan Almutawa, Director Operations, who is leading the Dubai jetpack implementation project. Martin Aircraft Company is very fortunate to have in the UAE such strong and visionary leadership that has recognised the importance and utility of our technology across the first responder community. In a fire service context, it has become clear from discussions with both Dubai Civil Defence and other potential buyers, that the Martin Jetpack, as a tactical air asset, would provide solutions in a number of key areas, including but not limited to: Intelligent surveillance Airborne command and control Initial intervention High payload drone – e.g. resupply of Breathing Apparatus Air Bottles High rise rescue using the Mule Train concept Rapid deployment of specialist teams

Martin Aircraft Company is very fortunate to have in the UAE such strong and visionary leadership that has recognised the importance and utility of our technology across the first responder community. In a fire service context, it has become clear from discussions with both Dubai Civil Defence and other potential buyers, that the Martin Jetpack, as a tactical air asset, would provide solutions in a number of key areas, including but not limited to:

  • Intelligent surveillance
  • Airborne command and control
  • Initial intervention
  • High payload drone – e.g. resupply of Breathing Apparatus Air Bottles
  • High rise rescue using the Mule Train concept
  • Rapid deployment of specialist teams

As part of our partnership with Dubai Civil Defence and following a best practice approach, we shall over the next few months, commence work on defining these various operational scenarios, undertake risk assessments, develop standard operating procedures and define the required training packages in preparation for delivery of the first units later in the year.

Commercially, with more than 28,000 trade buyers from 118 countries in attendance, the show was very successful with a lot of positive feedback from industry leadership and procurement departments.  We featured in a number of local and global media outlets, all of which provided excellent marketing for the Company and our jetpacks.

Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Martin Aircraft Company, Peter Coker, said, “Martin Aircraft has focused on the first responder markets for introduction of its innovative aircraft, the Martin Jetpack, which provides to organisations such as the Dubai Civil Defence, a significant operational advantage being able to carry commercial payloads of up to 120kgs, unlike most quadcopters which are limited in their payload capability”. We have generated from this exhibition a substantial number of sales leads and these will be followed up by our small sales and marketing team in the normal way, with announcements made at the appropriate time.” Said Coker.

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Manned Flight Display in China

The Company achieved a world first when on 6 December 2015, in front of a VIP crowd of over 2400 spectators, it performed a manned flight demonstration of its new P12.3 jetpack in Shenzhen, China. 

The display followed many months of preparation as the team at Martin Aircraft Company in conjunction with KuangChi Science Limited worked through the complex logistic challenges in Mainland China, scouted out suitable venues, and completed the flight evaluation and testing programme for the new aircraft so that it could be signed off for manned flight in support of our Joint Venture in China. 

Strategically, China is seen as one of our key target markets and the Company is well aware that for many customers “seeing is believing”. Having our aircraft conduct demonstration flights is one of our best sales tools, along with static displays and the flight simulators, which enable potential customers to experience and understand more about how this distributive technology can be utilised in ways that helicopters or light weight UAVs cannot.

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“Iron Man” Clubs for China

Concurrent with the Manned Flight Display in Shenzhen, Martin Aircraft Company Limited was pleased to announce that its Hong Kong based joint venture company, KuangChi Martin Jetpack Ltd (KCMJ), had signed 3 Intention Framework Agreements for a total of 100 manned jetpacks and 20 simulators.

It is noted that at this stage the agreements are subject to agreeing procurement contracts by 30 June 2016 which will include final purchase price and support for each of the packages.

The package is part of the China “Ironman Club” concept where each company provides Martin Jetpack and KuangChi Science capabilities in China.

The agreements were signed on 6 December 2015 at the first public flight demonstration of the P12 Martin Jetpack held at the Shenzhen OTC Waterpark in front of a crowd of 2,400 VIPs and distinguished guests along with members of the public. This marks another significant step forward for Martin Aircraft Company as it moves towards full commercialisation. The signing of the agreements follows a number of discussions led by both KuangChi Science Limited (HKSE: 00439) and the KuangChi Martin Jetpack Joint Venture in China.

The signing ceremony at Shenzhen was attended by senior representatives of KuangChi Science, companies buying the jetpacks and Martin Aircraft Company, including the Chair of Martin Aircraft, Mr Jon Mayson, Chairman of KuangChi Science and Director of Martin Aircraft Company, Dr Ruopeng Liu, Director of Martin Jetpack and Director of KCMJ, Dr Lin Luan and the Chief Executive Officer/Managing Director and Director of KCMJ, Mr Peter Coker.

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Next Phase of Manned Jetpack Test Flying February 2016

A new year and new beginnings as the Engineering team hands over to Flight Operations our next jetpack model for flight testing and evaluation. Designated P12.4, this new aircraft will join the jetpack fleet as a flight testing platform for both systems and component integration as we move forward to final design and production of the Next Generation Jetpacks (NG Model), which will be delivered to launch customers and partners later in the year.

In addition, the Unmanned Test Vehicle (UTV) specifically designed to provide the platform for the testing of the new flight control software, is progressing well and will also be handed to Flight Operations for specific test schedule flights in the near future.

Director of Flight Operations, Michael Read said, “Having multiple aircraft on the flight line enables our team to accelerate the flight testing programme which is a requirement for certification. It also allows additional flexibility to support Sales & Marketing efforts as well as affording us the opportunity to train more pilots and ground crews.”

Director of Flight Operations, Michael Read said, “Having multiple aircraft on the flight line enables our team to accelerate the flight testing programme which is a requirement for certification. It also allows additional flexibility to support Sales & Marketing efforts as well as affording us the opportunity to train more pilots and ground crews.”

As a Former Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) pilot, Michael holds a Bachelor of Science and an Airline Transport Pilot’s Licence and has extensive aviation experience and knowledge, including flight testing and certification.

Explaining the upcoming test schedule he said, “Now that the Fundamentals Test Programme has been completed on the P12 series of aircraft, Flight Operations are commencing a refinement test programme. This will help to expand the flight envelope, and to understand the potential operating environments for the jetpack (built up areas, aircraft formations, obstacles, different environments, etc.). We are also examining a fully integrated parachute test programme on the P12, with aircraft being recovered onto our new 40m x 20m airbag. All of this data will feed directly into both the NG programme and flight simulator programme to ensure that initial designs, flight models, planned test items and test methods are valid, thus minimising the time to market for our next range of products”, said Mr Read.

Work


Staffing Update Key Appointments

The marketing team is being expanded over the next few weeks to include a business development manager and a marketing & communications manager. In addition, part of our marketing philosophy is to ensure we have the correct level of representation in the market segments that we are targeting. To that end Martin Aircraft Company is pleased to announce the following key advisory appointments:

 profile1 Sheik Samir Mirdad – Middle East Regional Chief Strategist
Sheikh Samir Mirdad is a Saudi Arabian National who lives in Dubai. Sheikh Samir is an advisor to royal family members in the Arabian Gulf and joins Martin Aircraft Company as our Regional Chief Strategist Advisor. Sheikh Samir advises governments and institutions on large scale investment and capital projects, both within and outside the region, and has advised on projects in excess of US$20 billion dollars. Most recently he has been heavily involved in the Euro 200 million dollar New Doha Airport project in Qatar. In addition to his business interest, Sheik Samir is a keen sportsman. He is currently holder of the world amateur show jumping title and is well known in both Football and MotoGP circles.
Tony McGuirk CBE, QFSM, MSc, FIFireE, FIIRSM - Fire Service Chief Strategist
Tony McGuirk joins Martin Aircraft Company as our First Responder Strategist with a particular focus on the Fire Services. Tony has over 35 years’ experience in the Fire and Civil Defence profession, with a track record of managing major incidents and crises, alongside driving radical organisational transformation through an authentic and collaborative leadership style and an ability to leverage strategic partnerships. Tony has been a Divisional Commander and Chief Fire Officer and has first-hand experience in introducing disruptive technology into the services. He has extensive senior level networks in Australia, New Zealand, USA, Canada, Europe and the UK, and is an Associate of International City Managers Association (USA). Tony is a Fellow of the Institution of Fire Engineers, Fellow of the International Institute of Risk and Safety Management, a Graduate of Harvard Business School, a Graduate of the UK Civil Service Top Managers' Programme, and holds a Master’s Degree in Human Resource Management.
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 Profile Clare Clare Attenborough
Clare brings a broad range of international marketing and strategy skills to the role of Marketing and Media Manager. For the past few years she has been working as a marketing and communications consultant to predominantly technology businesses in the UK, Dubai, Australia and New Zealand where she has become adept at quickly understanding local markets and client requirements in these markets. Prior to this she held various analytical and strategic roles at British Telecom where she led virtual teams from across the organisation to provide market insight and strategic direction to the Board. Clare holds an MBA from CASS Business School, London, where she focussed on the strategic management of technology, and a law degree from the University of Cape Town.
Catherine Stuart
Catherine Stuart joins Martin Aircraft as our Business Development Manager with a focus on developing new markets and opportunities locally and internationally. Catherine, has over 28 years’ experience in Business Development and was a Senior Executive Manager for an IBM Partner global services business development team, managing the Resources Industry sector within the Asia Pacific Region. During her eleven year tenure working closely with IBM, Catherine gained a wealth of experience within a broad range of industry, resources and multi-national company business development and account management. Catherine’s has extensive experience in the development of sales channels, and licensing technology to large multi-national companies, including large portfolio of clients within Government, Airline, Geospatial and Resources Industry sectors. Catherine is also known for her work in infrastructure re-development of war torn countries and her extensive work in Humanitarian Development, achieving fifty-seven successful and sustainable micro-enterprise and rural food security projects in sub-Saharan Africa through the establishment of an international trade network to support growth.
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