In a presentation to the Vertical Flight Society that was almost devoid of any significant detail, company CEO Ben Tigner insisted that the model is on track to complete type certification in 2025.
On July 16, 2019, Karem Aircraft was granted a patent covering technology it intends to use in the development of the Butterfly eVTOL aircraft. The design will be based on the patented Optimum Speed Rotor technology previously developed by company founder Abe Karem.
Also on July 16, 2019, Karem announced that it has raised $25 million through a Series A funding round. The main backer for this was South Korean industrial group Hanwha Systems. The funding was approved on December 8, 2019, by the U.S. Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States. It will be used to launch a new spin-off company called Overair (earlier referred to as K4 Aeronautics) that will bring the Butterfly to market and establish an air-taxi operation in support of Karem’s partnership with Uber Air. In the future, Karem Aircraft will mainly focus on its activities in the defense market.
In January 2020, Karem Aircraft formed Overair, Inc. as a spin-off venture to lead the development of the Butterfly under the leadership of president and CEO Ben Tigner. This was one of 10 eVTOL aircraft programs selected as a partner in the Uber Elevate air taxi program, but this alliance broke up in late 2020 when Elevate was acquired by Joby Aircraft. Overair had been working to a goal of getting the Butterfly certified and in service by 2023, and the company is reportedly one of several eVTOL pioneers actively working with the FAA on a path to type certification.