Skydweller Aero Inc. is bringing its flight test and aircraft modification operations to Hancock County. The project represents a corporate investment of $15 million, as well as $40 million in advanced solar powered aircraft inventory. The project will create at least 36 new jobs.
“The decision to locate these high-tech operations in Mississippi helps position our state for many more successful years as a leader in the aerospace industry,” said Gov. Tate Reeves. “This fantastic investment from the Skydweller Aero team will provide dozens of new opportunities for the people of Hancock County and is further testament to our strong business environment and talented workforce.”
Skydweller Aero is a transatlantic cutting-edge aerospace company developing solar powered aircraft solutions capable of achieving perpetual flight with heavy and powerful payload capacity. Utilizing technology based upon the longest continuous renewably powered flight program in history, this fast-growing startup is developing a new class of unmanned aircraft, providing the persistence of geosynchronous satellites with the powerful sensing capabilities and the flexibility of a large, airborne platform. Skydweller Aero’s U.S. and global headquarters are in Oklahoma City, and it has European offices headquartered in Spain.
“Skydweller is excited to begin operating at Stennis International Airport and is grateful for the ongoing support from the state of Mississippi and Hancock County,,” said Skydweller Aero CEO Robert Miller. “The Southern hospitality shines bright, and we anticipate great success, with 2024 being a very busy year. Our recruitment has started strong, and our first newly recruited technician will travel to Spain later this month to start their on-the-job training and the transition of flight test operations to Stennis. We look forward to working with the local colleges and universities in developing the workforce opportunities in this unique field of aviation.”
The Mississippi Development Authority is providing assistance through the Mississippi Flexible Tax Incentive, or MFLEX, as well as through the Airport Revitalization Revolving Loan Program. Hancock County is assisting with the construction of the hangar, and AccelerateMS is assisting with workforce training.
“MDA is glad to support Skydweller Aero as the company brings its solar-powered uncrewed aircraft manufacturing operations to the Mississippi Gulf Coast, said MDA Deputy Executive Director Laura Hipp. “Encouraging an environment that makes Mississippi an attractive place to build and innovate is one of the best ways we can help ensure more companies like Skydweller Aero realize Mississippi is an ideal destination for business. I am proud of the efforts that helped secure this economic development win for Hancock County and look forward to the positive impacts this significant investment and 36 new jobs will have on the Gulf Coast Region.”
Construction is slated to begin in early November with operations expected to begin by the end of the year. For more information, visit www.skydweller.aero.