Led by its founder, Clive Jackson, the management of Fly Victor has secured significant financial backing from an MBO consortium of former investors and regular flyers to acquire the company's global operations, while tracking to profitability this year.
Launched in 2011, Victor is committed to transparency and the environment. It says that breaking free to chart an independent future will allow the company to maintain its commitment to challenging business aviation to decarbonise in a matter of years rather than decades.
The company has been listed in the Sunday Times Tech Track for five consecutive years from 2015 to 2019 and has launched a global environmental campaign to ensure every Victor charter flight is mandated to fly 200 per cent carbon neutral. The business is set to become the world's most environmentally responsible private aviation company with its award-winning approach to sustainability.
Having had a strong start to the year, the company is on track to achieve profitability in early 2020. Its underlying financial performance has shown consistent year on year improvements across all key performance indicators with the company investing heavily over the past five years to develop an integrated customer-facing and back-office work flow platform that has significantly reduced the cost of transaction and improved efficiencies.
The consortium of investors has preserved 20% of the company's share capital for its management and staff in recognition of their role in helping to establish the company as a leading charter broker in Europe and, as importantly, their future contribution towards building the future.
Clive Jackson says: “Our desire to undertake this MBO was driven by the belief that we have an exceptional team of highly dedicated and professional staff with the utmost integrity. This opportunity gives them the chance to shape the future development of Victor. It was a competitive bid process and there were multiple bids, so I am delighted that we secured the winning bid. Special thank you to our customers, partner operators and Victor team for believing in us on this incredible journey.”
Joining Jackson in the MBO consortium is Rob Procter, a significant private investor, successful British entrepreneur as founder and former CEO of Securis Investment Partners LLP, former managing director at Morgan Stanley and former shareholder in the original Alyssum Group. He adds: “The staff in Victor exude a passion, dedication and desire to excel that is inspiring. They are fiercely loyal and have demonstrated tremendous commitment to Victor's management and founder through a sometimes difficult process. They deserve a future that will allow them to build a world-class brand, and I am proud to be associated and to contribute.”
In related news, AFV Partners LLC has acquired 100 per cent of UK-based RocketRoute Limited, an aviation services company that provides flight planning, fuel, concierge and marketplace services through a single integrated SaaS platform that serves the commercial, business, air rescue and military aviation markets, from Alyssum Holdings Limited. Terms of the transaction, which closed on March 11, 2020, were not disclosed. Clive Jackson is also CEO of Alyssum Group.
RocketRoute was co-founded in 2010 by Uwe Nitsche and Justin Coelho with the mission to make flight planning easy and straight forward for all. Using a SaaS platform and an industry leading 24×7 flight support service, RocketRoute has the ability to dynamically route flights in real-time using current air traffic conditions, which is a core competency required to operate efficiently in European air space. Nitsche and Coelho will continue in their leadership roles under AFV Partners' ownership.
Tony Aquila is founder, chairman and CEO of AFV Partners, which was formed in 2019 as a long-term permanent capital investor. In January 2020, Aquila's AFV Partners acquired Aircraft Performance Group (APG), a leading global provider of proprietary aircraft performance, weight and balance, and flight planning software solutions.
On the acquisition of RocketRoute, Aquila says: “We had an immediate connection with Uwe and Justin, and hold a high regard for what they have built. As part of our global mobility platform, adding a leader in flight planning is a key cornerstone and expands our product capabilities globally and across all end markets. We will leverage APG and RocketRoute's core offerings to create a seamlessly integrated weight and balance, runway analysis, flight planning and services platform for the global aviation market. Bringing APG and RocketRoute together demonstrates our commitment to continuous innovation and furthers both companies' visions by creating a global market leader.”
”We are very excited to work with Tony and the AFV Partners team and to benefit from their collective technical expertise, synergies and geographical reach as we strive to become a key contributor to their global mobility platform,” adds RocketRoute CEO Nitsche.
RocketRoute CCO Coelho comments: “I have been very impressed by the speed and accuracy of the AFV Partners team in getting this deal done and their expertise and vision for the space. Relative to the other parties we interacted with during our sale process, AFV Partners was the most logical and complimentary fit for RocketRoute. We have now been liberated to execute on our long-term vision.”