Google co-founder Larry Page invests $100M to build flying cars

Posted Jun 13, 2016 by Lucky Malicay
Larry Page, the co-founder of Google, is heavily investing in a revolutionary form of transportation, secretly funding a company that specializes in building flying cars.
Moller Skycars
Moller Skycars
Jeff McNeill
Last week, Bloomberg reported that the American Internet tycoon has invested $100 million into building flying cars through Zee.Aero, a startup based right next to Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, California.
Based at the heart of Silicon Valley, Zee.Aero said on its website that it is “working at the intersection of aerodynamics, advanced manufacturing, and electric propulsion, we provide a stimulating environment where creative employees can explore new challenges.”
It is currently hiring people who “have expertise in aircraft design, electric power systems, active control, machine learning, aeroacoustics, composite structures, or systems integration, let’s talk.”
Established in 2010, Zee.Aero has close to 150 personnel. Its operations, according to Bloomberg, have expanded to an airport hangar more than an hour's drive from Mountain View where it maintains a manufacturing facility.
Although Page’s involvement in the project remains highly a secret, he was known among the Zee.Aero employees as GUS or the guy upstairs.
At Zee.Aero’s headquarters, personnel were sidelined to the first floor while Page uses the second as a private hideaway decorated with expensive paintings, a treadmill-like climbing wall, and a rocket engine.
The CEO of Google's parent company Alphabet, Page has a fortune worth almost $37 billion, making him the world’s 12th richest person.
Aside from Zee.Aero, Page is also secretly funding another flying car startup called Kitty Hawk, which started operations last year. Kitty Hawk is reportedly run by Sebastian Thrun, the man behind Google’s self-driving car program.
Last month, Google announced plans to open a technology center in Michigan for its self-driving car project.
Alphabet said the center in Novi will be used by engineers and others testing vehicles provided by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles.
“For the past few years, members of our team have been working from the Greater Detroit area,” Alphabet said. “Now it’s time to lay down roots.”