Dubai-based Vista Global has acquired the Florida-based JetSmarter, which is a digital marketplace for private jets as it looks to ramp up its digital offering. The deal would allow it to tap into the lucrative on-demand private jet market.
Dubbed Uber of the Skies, JetSmarter had revolutionized private air travel as it looked to sell seats on empty private flights through an app. The company, which has two million downloads to date, had also reportedly received funding from Saudi royals and Jay-Z.
In a statement, Vista Global said that the acquisition helped it enhance its “formidable position” as it was now able to offer the largest suite of services and advanced technologies to private aviation customers.
The deal will also it allow to integrate JetSmarter’s platform into the back-end technology of Vista Global’s brands VistaJet, Vista Lease and XOJET, making the process of booking much easier.
Customers today want speed, reliability and value, which in today’s world is only possible with technology,” says Vista Global’s founder and chairman ,Thomas Flohr.
“Vista Global’s reach and infrastructure will take JetSmarter to the global stage to fully realize its potential. JetSmarter’s technology will digitalize Vista Global’s market-leading customer offering to Program Members and On Demand customers.
”The transaction is expected to be completed in the second quarter and is subject to customary closing conditions.
The Middle East was a booming market for private aviation, thanks to an oil-fueled economic growth in business. But the demand for business jets have weakened over time. According to a forecast by Honeywell, the Middle East and Africa will account for just 4% of demand for business jets over the next five years as opposed to 61% in North America.