Joby Aviation to get investment from Tesla shareholder Baillie Gifford

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Signage is seen on the Joby Aviation Air Taxi outside the New York Stock Exchange in Manhattan

(Reuters) - British investment management firm Baillie Gifford will invest $180 million in electric aircraft maker Joby Aviation, they said on Wednesday.

This comes days after Joby clinched a $55 million contract extension to deliver up to nine air taxis to the U.S. Air Force, marking the company's first revenue-generating operations.

Unlike other electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) manufacturers, which plan to sell aircraft to customers such as airlines and logistics companies, Joby's business model is similar to a rideshare app.

"It is important as long-term investors – even more so in a challenging environment – that we maintain our approach of backing transformational companies to build new growth industries," a Baillie Gifford spokesperson said in a statement.

The British investment firm are also investors in Elon Musk-led electric vehicle maker Tesla Inc and online retailer Inc.

The investment is expected to close on May 5, Baillie Gifford and Joby said on Wednesday.

Joby also reported cash and short-term marketable securities of $978 million at the end of the first quarter, before the investment.

Once certified, the EVTOL maker will compete in a crowded market with dozens of other developers such as Archer Aviation and Vertical Aerospace Ltd vying to revamp urban transportation.

(Reporting by Akash Sriram and Aishwarya Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)