Wheels Up has announced its financial results for the second quarter, which ended on 30 June 2021. The company increased its revenue 113 per cent year-over-year to $285.6 million, active members grew 47 per cent year-over-year to 10,515 in total, live flight legs increased 146 per cent year-over-year to 18,234, net loss increased by $1.6 million year-over-year to $(29.0) million, and adjusted EBITDA improved by $7.6 million year-over-year to $(8.5) million.
“The accelerating growth in our revenue is a great way to mark our first reported results as a public company and creates a solid foundation to build upon,” says chairman and CEO Kenny Dichter. “Our iconic brand, combined with our compelling membership model and exclusive partnerships and experiences, have uniquely positioned us to gain market share during this time of robust demand. As always, I want to recognise our hardworking team for their tireless efforts and thank our loyal members and customers for their trust in us.”
CFO Eric Jacobs adds: “The demand in the first half of the year has increased across all cabin classes, and our diverse fleet of aircraft is contributing to our success in attracting new members, retaining existing members and driving an increase in live flight legs. Our strategic initiatives are resonating with members and customers, and we believe that our investments in operations, technology, product development and customer service will help ensure a premium experience and drive future operating efficiencies.”
The company is focused on building the leading demand generation platform for private aviation and connecting travel demand with fragmented and under-utilised assets while continuing to improve customer experience. The increase in both demand and supply drives more liquidity in the marketplace.
Its demand initiatives included;
Wheels Up recently partnered with American Express as the exclusive private jet partner for the new American Express Premium Private Jet programme for all Platinum card members. It also launched ‘UP for Business’, a new customisable solution established within Wheels Up to meet the travel needs of corporate clients. It added iconic luxury brands to the robust member benefits platform including Porsche Cars North America and Abercrombie & Kent, and continued to build on the company's technology capabilities with the conversion of Wheels Up's Mountain Aviation, LLC fleet onto the Avianis flight management system in June, providing the ability to better optimise supply.
The company completed a merger with Aspirational Consumer Lifestyle Corp. on 13 July, with shares commencing trading on the New York Stock Exchange on 14 July under the ‘UP’ ticker symbol.
Wheels Up has also appointed Gene McKenna as chief product officer. The position will play a critical role as the company continues to build out its Marketplace platform to become the leading demand generator in the industry. McKenna will oversee the entire product portfolio, developing and driving the vision, roadmap and strategy to accelerate the company's growth.
McKenna joins Wheels Up with 18 years of product management experience and a decade of software engineering experience. During his career, he founded and sold two internet companies in the events and travel industries, and has held leadership positions at large corporations, including Acxiom Digital and Groupon. McKenna has a strong record of delivering designs that drive customer growth through marketing and data analytics.
“Gene has the background and experience we need to deliver a leading-edge marketplace platform to private aviation,” states Vinayak Hegde, chief marketplace officer. “As we accelerate our investment in technology and product offerings, Gene's passion for innovation and commitment to building a world-class product for our members and customers is unparalleled.”