Wheels Up replaces Delta Private Jets as the exclusive American Express Premium Private Jet Program provider for U.S. Centurion and Platinum cardmembers
Wheels Up is the new American Express Premium Private Jet Program partner. It replaces Delta Private Jets, the Amex partner since 2016. Wheels Up, of course, purchased Delta Private Jets in a deal that closed a year ago in January. In other words, Wheels Up essentially renewed the existing DPJ partnership. However, that analysis ignores that the terms of the new relationship are significantly different.
Are the American Express-Wheels Up benefits worth getting a Platinum card for $695?
American Express is adding Wheels Up as its Premium Private Jet Program partner, replacing Delta Private Jets. Wheels Up purchased Delta Private Jets in January 2020, and the existing American Express – DPJ partnership was set to expire on Aug. 31. Delta Private Jets had been the exclusive partner of the AX Premium Private Jet Program since 2016. But should you get the Amex Platinum card just to buy Wheels UP?
The value of Delta Air Lines’ stake in Wheels Up increased to $520 million from $210 million, surpassing its 13% holding in Korean Air
Delta Air Lines’ decision to sell Delta Private Jets has yielded a huge gain on paper. It’s up over 100% just since the fourth quarter. In its latest 10-Q filing, the Atlanta-based airline increased the carrying value of its 24% interest in Wheels Up to $520 million. That makes the New York-based private aviation company its largest equity ownership stake.
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.