UTU | August 01, 2022
utu a Singapore-based travel-tech company, has announced a new partnership with Flying Blue, the frequent flyer programme of leading Franco-Dutch airline group Air France-KLM. The new collaboration takes utu's mission of revitalising the tax-free shopping and travel industry to a new level, with even more rewarding benefits.
"Flying Blue is pleased to partner with utu to provide our members new opportunities to earn Miles when they shop abroad. This innovative partnership is a first of its kind for a European airline group, and one which we think our members will love."
Ben Lipsey, SVP Customer Loyalty, Air France KLM Group
The Flying Blue frequent flyer programme under Air France-KLM is one of the most subscribed programmes in Europe, with over 17 million members. Together with its partners Delta Air Lines and Virgin Atlantic, Air France-KLM operates the largest transatlantic joint venture, with more than 340 daily flights in 2019.
Through the "more for your VAT refunds" model, tourists using the utu Tax-Free Card can get up to 30% more for their tax refunds from tax-free shopping with rewards, including Frequent Flyer Miles, hotel points, retail loyalty points, and more.
Commenting on the new partnership, Sanjay Chinchwade, CMO, utu said, "We are incredibly excited to announce our new partnership with Flying Blue. For us, it is the first time European airlines have joined our growing list of partners. And for European utu travellers, it is even more exciting as they can now select one of the most popular airline frequent flyer programmes, that of Air France and KLM, as their rewards programme when converting their VAT refunds."
The reward expansion continues the most significant upheaval in the history of tax-free shopping. Until today, tax refunds have always been refunded in cash.
Receive an "upsize" benefit of US$125 in utu miles for every US$100 tax refund when shopping overseas.
Earn 4,686 miles for every US$100 tax refund to the utu Tax-Free Card.
The utu app: a new world of benefits
In addition, Flying Blue members can also enjoy higher tax refunds by downloading and binding their account to the utu Tax-Free mobile app.
To take part, download the utu Tax-Free mobile app from iOS and Google Play and activate the utu Tax-Free Card and select Flying Blue as their choice of refund method.
Once activated, travellers need only fill their utu Tax-Free Card number when selecting where to send the refund at participating tax refund kiosks in any of the 50 top destinations where VAT or GST are offered, including Singapore, France, Italy, Germany, South Korea, Thailand, and the UAE.
To explore an ever-expanding list of utu Partners and benefits, and make your tax-free shopping experience better, please visit www. utu.global
utu founded in 2015 by industry leaders with over 25 years of travel and trade experience, is transforming tax-free shopping worldwide by empowering travellers with the freedom to obtain a higher VAT refund.
About Flying Blue
Flying Blue is the Air France-KLM Group's frequent flyer programme. Created in 2005, it now has 17 million members worldwide, who have access to a multitude of awards and benefits, and can earn and spend miles with a wide selection of airline, retail and financial partners.
Velo3D | September 02, 2022
Velo3D, Inc., a leading metal additive manufacturing technology company for mission-critical parts, today announced Hermeus, a company developing hypersonic aircraft for defense and commercial applications, has acquired an original Sapphire and a large-format Sapphire XC that is designed for high-volume production. The printers, both of which will be calibrated for Inconel 718, will be used to build parts for Hermeus’ Chimera engine and Quarterhorse aircraft. “Metal additive manufacturing is a core component of our plan to vertically integrate production,” said Glenn Case, CTO at Hermeus. “As we explore the capabilities of Velo3D’s additive manufacturing technology, we’ll be looking for ways to increase performance, consolidate components, reduce weight of our aircraft, and minimize external dependencies.” Hermeus was founded in 2018 to radically accelerate air travel with hypersonic aircraft. The company is an up-and-coming superstar in the aviation industry with more than $130 million in funding, including a $100 million Series B and contracts with the U.S. Air Force. It also has strong support from NASA and other U.S. government agencies, as well as funding from aerospace innovators like RTX Ventures, the venture capital group of Raytheon Technologies. The Chimera engine is a turbine-based combined cycle engine that will power Hermeus’ first aircraft, Quarterhorse, an autonomous aircraft designed to touch high Mach speeds and prove reusability. Quarterhorse’s first flight is planned for 2023.
“Hypersonics is an extremely challenging subset of the aviation industry and at the speeds that Hermeus will achieve, temperature, vibration, and aerodynamics play major factors in the flight of the aircraft “There are not many teams with the deep experience in hypersonics, aviation, and space flight that Hermeus has, and we’re truly honored to provide Sapphire printers to help them achieve their goals. I have no doubt that they will bring their vision to life and make hypersonic commercial flight a reality.”
” Benny Buller, Velo3D CEO and Founder
Velo3D’s metal additive manufacturing technology has seen extensive adoption in the hypersonics and NewSpace industries due to its ability to build the complex, mission-critical parts engineers need without compromising design, quality, or performance. Customers can print existing designs without the need to design the parts for additive manufacturing or obtain specialized training. The company’s solution also helps teams iterate on designs more quickly and greatly simplify supply chains.
Velo3D is a metal 3D printing technology company. 3D printing—also known as additive manufacturing (AM)—has a unique ability to improve the way high-value metal parts are built. However, legacy metal AM has been greatly limited in its capabilities since its invention almost 30 years ago. This has prevented the technology from being used to create the most valuable and impactful parts, restricting its use to specific niches where the limitations were acceptable. Velo3D has overcome these limitations so engineers can design and print the parts they want. The company’s solution unlocks a wide breadth of design freedom and enables customers in space exploration, aviation, power generation, energy, and semiconductor to innovate the future in their respective industries. Using Velo3D, these customers can now build mission-critical metal parts that were previously impossible to manufacture. The end-to-end solution includes the Flow print preparation software, the Sapphire family of printers, and the Assure quality control system—all of which are powered by Velo3D’s Intelligent Fusion manufacturing process. The company delivered its first Sapphire system in 2018 and has been a strategic partner to innovators such as SpaceX, Honeywell, Honda, Chromalloy, and Lam Research. Velo3D has been named to Fast Company’s prestigious annual list of the World’s Most Innovative Companies for 2021. For more information, please visit Velo3D.com, or follow the company on LinkedIn or Twitter.
DEFENSE AND SPACE
Virgin Galactic | July 11, 2022
Virgin Galactic an aerospace and space travel company announced an agreement with Aurora Flight Sciences a Boeing company, to partner in the design and manufacturing of the Company’s next generation motherships. The mothership is the air launch carrier aircraft in Virgin Galactic’s space flight system, that carries the spaceship to its release altitude of approximately 50,000 feet.
Headquartered in Virginia, Aurora brings more than 30 years of experience building cutting-edge aircraft from concept to delivery and specializes in novel aircraft configurations and complex composites. Virgin Galactic has been working with Aurora for the past several months to develop design specifications as well as workforce and resource requirements in preparation for this long-term project. The two-vehicle contract announced today will enable Aurora to immediately begin development.
“Our next generation motherships are integral to scaling our operations. They will be faster to produce, easier to maintain and will allow us to fly substantially more missions each year. Supported by the scale and strength of Boeing, Aurora is the ideal manufacturing partner for us as we build our fleet to support 400 flights per year at Spaceport America.”
Virgin Galactic Chief Executive Officer Michael Colglazier
Virgin Galactic’s manufacturing strategy is designed to leverage third party suppliers to improve efficiency, access new innovation and technology, and tap into existing highly skilled labor pools. This allows the Company’s in-house team to focus on complex and critical elements such as design, engineering and final assembly.
Aurora plans to manufacture the aircraft at its Columbus, Mississippi and Bridgeport, West Virginia facilities. Final assembly of the motherships will be completed at the Virgin Galactic facility in Mojave, California.
“With Aurora, we are accessing the best of the nationwide aerospace ecosystem,” said Swami Iyer, President of Aerospace Systems. “As a subsidiary of the world’s largest aerospace company, Aurora has some of the industry’s top engineers and manufacturing facilities.”
Todd Citron, Boeing Chief Technology Officer and Vice President and General Manager of Boeing Research & Technology added: “Boeing is excited to contribute our culture of safety, our operational excellence, and our expertise in aircraft design and manufacturing to help advance human space travel. Today’s announcement expands our collaboration with Virgin Galactic to accelerate transformative aerospace technologies.”
“This partnership between Aurora and Virgin Galactic brings together teams that share a passion for aerospace, innovation, and exploration,” said Per Beith, Aurora President and CEO. “Aurora's decades of experience in aircraft design, composite manufacturing, and vehicle integration, coupled with our world-class engineers and manufacturing technicians, enables us to provide the unique expertise and capabilities necessary to complete these next generation aircraft. We're thrilled to have this opportunity to support Virgin Galactic’s mission to pioneer space travel.”
The first new mothership is expected to enter service in 2025, the same year Virgin Galactic’s first Delta-class spaceship is expected to begin revenue payload flights. The Company’s upcoming commercial missions are expected in Q1 2023.
You can download all press materials including images and b-roll from the Virgin Galactic Press Assets
About Virgin Galactic Holdings
Virgin Galactic Holdings, Inc. is an aerospace and space travel company, pioneering human spaceflight for private individuals and researchers with its advanced air and space vehicles. It is developing a spaceflight system designed to connect the world to the wonder and awe created by space travel and to offer customers a transformative experience.
About Aurora Flight Sciences
Aurora Flight Sciences, a Boeing Company, advances the future of flight by developing and applying innovations across aircraft configurations, autonomous systems, propulsion technologies, and manufacturing processes. With a passionate and agile team, Aurora delivers solutions to its customers’ toughest challenges while meeting high standards of safety and quality.