Kenny Dichter and Wheels Up doled out less than $100 million in cash to build the second-largest private jet operator with a $2 billion valuation
When Wheels Up’s acquired 5th-biggest Part 135 charter operator Mountain Aviation in January, it pushed the group past Directional Aviation’s Flexjet as the second-largest for-hire private aircraft operator in the U.S. For Wheels Up founder and CEO Kenny Dichter, it was a day at the beach compared to another cold New York winter morning in early 2019. At that point, Wheels Up didn’t operate a single aircraft. Founded in 2013, its owned and leased fleet was outsourced to Gama Aviation Signature. Wheels Up was a big brand. Yet, it was merely a marketing organization selling memberships onto what was then mainly a fleet of King Air 350i turboprops.
Continue reading “Here’s how much Wheels Up paid for each of its 5 acquisitions”
The acquisition follows the purchase of Delta Private Jets, Travel Management Company, and Avianis, and squares it up against NetJets
Wheels Up is looking to move closer to NetJets and pull away from Directional Aviation and Vista Global Holdings. Its acquisition of Gama Aviation LLC this morning gives it over 300 owned and managed aircraft.
Gama Aviation Signature, as it is known, already was managing the Wheels Up fleet of King Air 350i, Citation Excel/XLS, and Citation X aircraft.
It follows its acquisitions of Travel Management Company last June and Delta Private Jets, completed in January.
Continue reading “Wheels Up buys Gama Aviation Signature growing its fleet to over 300 private aircraft”