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Slashdot - Flying Car Startup Kitty Hawk Is Winding Down


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Sebastian Thrun, the CEO of Kitty Hawk, informed employees on Wednesday the company was laying them off, according to a news report. The company also posted the news on its LinkedIn page. From the report: Sources inside the company told Insider that Kitty Hawk had recently wound down work on its most recent flying-car project, Heaviside, and reverted to research-and-development mode with Google co-founder Larry Page more closely involved with the work. However, it appears the company couldn't see a way forward. Laid-off staff have been given four months of severance pay, an employee said. Thrun, a self-driving car pioneer and a Google veteran, founded Kitty Hawk in 2010, and Page financially propped it up. Insiders said Page remained the sole bankroller of Kitty Hawk throughout its lifetime. He became increasingly hands-off over the years, though he would involve himself in newer projects as they sprung up, including an internal initiative to make flying cars run more quietly. The company produced several prototype models of its flying cars, including Flyer, which the company shuttered in 2020. Heaviside, its most recent model, was designed to be quieter for flying in densely populated environments. In 2019 the company also spun up Wisk, a joint venture between Kitty Hawk and Boeing, which will continue.

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