Skip traffic, fly home by Jetpack

Liu Ruopeng, chairman of the Martin Aircraft Company's major shareholder, Hong Kong-listed Kuang-Chi Science, reckons there's scope for people to skip the traffic by flying a jetpack home.
China may help dream to beat jams come true.

By Christopher Adams

Picture this. It's 5.30pm in Beijing, or possibly Shanghai. Workers are preparing to head home from the office, but the traffic is apocalyptic.

The man dubbed "China's Elon Musk" reckons he has the solution - and it involves New Zealand's Martin Jetpack.

Liu Ruopeng, chairman of the Martin Aircraft Company's major shareholder, Hong Kong-listed Kuang-Chi Science, reckons there's scope for people to skip the traffic by flying a jetpack home.

"Mega-cities are all gridlocked with traffic," he told the China Daily in the lead-up to a public demonstration of the jetpack in the Chinese city of Shenzhen last weekend.


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"Imagine on a rooftop one or two people wearing jetpacks - they can simply fly from one building to another, saving all the time they would be trapped in terrible traffic."

It's a nice idea, albeit an expensive one, with the personal version of the jetpack set to have a price tag of around US$150,000.

But surely Liu's just been watching too many science fiction movies?

Martin Aircraft chief executive Peter Coker, however, said his dream could become a reality.

Watch the test flight of the jetpack in Shenzhen.

"When you look at some of the challenges in the major cities, there's no doubt that it could be used in a transport-type capability in the future," Coker said. "It's a matter of working with the China aviation authorities, which Kuang-Chi Science already have really good relations with."

On Monday the company, which expects to begin selling aircraft during the second half of next year, announced the signing of three agreements for the delivery of 100 manned jetpacks and 20 simulators in China.

Martin Aircraft shares closed at A83.5c on the ASX yesterday.

CBL soars

It didn't take long for CBL Corporation to bust through the $2.30 price target UBS analyst Marcus Curley placed on the stock last month.

Shares in the financial risk insurer closed at $2.31 yesterday, having gained 49 per cent since they listed at $1.55 in October.

Continued below.

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Curley put his $2.30, 12-month target on CBL on November 23, when the stock was trading at around $1.85.

UBS, whose investment banking arm advised the CBL float, has a buy recommendation on the insurer's shares.

Waiting, waiting

Will troubled investment firm Pyne Gould Corporation manage to file its well overdue annual report by Christmas?

That remains unclear as the company is keeping its cards close to its chest.

A spokesman told Stock Takes this week that there was no update on when the report might arrive.

"When there is anything, we'll announce via NZX," he said.

The company first said its accounts would be late in September, when it blamed the delay on a slow handover of information from its previous auditor, PwC, to Grant Thornton. On November 3 the firm said it would file the report by the third week of that month, but that never happened, with the company saying on November 23 that it was still working through "one remaining technical matter" with its auditor.

It's the second year in a row that PGC has been late in filing its accounts.

PGC shares last traded at 24.5c before they were suspended from trading in October.

Market will stay volatile, warns Craigs

 Craigs is telling clients that the rollercoaster equity market ride will continue.
Craigs is telling clients that the rollercoaster equity market ride will continue.

Craigs Investment Partners is warning clients to prepare for ongoing equity market volatility next year.

Rather than being a short-term dynamic, the ups and downs of 2015 could simply be a return to a more normal environment after a few unusually settled years, the sharebroker said in its latest News & Views report.

"In 2015, we have seen moves of more than 1 per cent in either direction for the S&P 500 26.7 per cent of the time. That is a substantial increase from the average of 16.7 per cent that prevailed in the three preceding years and goes some way to explaining why markets have been somewhat of a rollercoaster this year."

The US Federal Reserve's monetary easing programme has provided much support to equity markets since the global financial crisis. "With this flow of market-smoothing liquidity slowing, and with [share] valuations at elevated levels, the volatility we have experienced in 2015 is likely to continue," Craigs said.

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- West Auckland
01:37 pm Sunday 13 December 2015
Wouldn't the congestion transfer to the sky instead?


01:37 pm Sunday 13 December 2015
The inherent stability of a jetpack is poor, requiring a great deal of skill to fly. Can see these things dropping out of the sky on a regular basis if they ever become all that popular. Good luck to the pilots and Martin Jetpack investors, my bet is that the force of gravity will prevail and that these clumsy flying machines will not.

Ted Filter

- Auckland Central
01:36 pm Sunday 13 December 2015
"Skip traffic, fly home by Jetpack"

You overlook the fact that if you have a jetpack, so do tens of thousands of others.


10:14 am Friday 11 December 2015
Apart from leading to traffic congestion in the sky as well as on the roads, I see absolutely no benefit to this creation that cannot be achieved with drones. Not one single one.

This thing is all hype and makes me think of a Segway with balance control faults. The highly experienced fighter pilot in the videos doesn't look like he has much control over it even in good weather conditions


- Antarctica
10:14 am Friday 11 December 2015
If a car breaks down you pull over to the side of the road but with a jetpack the options are not so favourable. If you are lucky you drop to the ground like a brick, and if you are unlucky you end up in an uncontrolled spin until you slam into something.


- Tokoroa
10:14 am Friday 11 December 2015
The jetpack scenario you paint is a fantasy. Recreational aviation is all but non-existent in China -- mainly because the government does not allow it. If Chinese citizens aren't allowed to own helicopters, why would they be allowed to own jetpacks for commuting? Also, given the huge fuss that's taking place around the world with respect to tiny toy drones, do you really think that jetpacks are going to be allowed to fill our skies?

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