Wheels Up Forms Wheels Up Aircraft Sales

Wheels Up logo.
Credit: Wheels Up

Wheels Up has formed a new business division called Wheels Up Aircraft Sales, offering aircraft brokerage, acquisition, trade and advisory services. 

With the expansion, Wheels Up offers private jet membership, aircraft management and whole aircraft sales. The move follows the company’s acquisition of Gama Aviation, software developer Avianis  Systems and the close of its acquisition of Delta Private jets through a transaction with Delta Air Lines this year. 

The new business unit is led by Chris Brenner, former senior vice president of sales for the Americas at Jetcraft Corp.; John Odegard and Seth Zlotkin. Odegard and Zlotkin co-founded QS Partners, NetJets’ aircraft sales and acquisition company. 

“Adding whole aircraft sales and advisory services has been part of our long-term vision for Wheels Up as a total aviation solutions company and a global leader in the industry. The timing is perfect in that we see a meaningful shift in the addressable market and overall interest in private flying,” said Kenny Dichter, Wheels Up founder and CEO. “With this new platform, we will have the capability to support the entire life cycle of a private flyer.”

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought changes to the sector. Wheels Up has been adding new customers at rates seen before the crisis and is now running at pre-pandemic levels, Dichter said recently on an Aviation Week Network webinar. Travel is from families relocating or moving around and not from business and vacation travel. When those come back, Dichter said he thinks, “you’re going to see a heyday in the private space.”

Dichter founded Wheels Up in 2013. 

Molly McMillin

Molly McMillin, a 25-year aviation journalist, is managing editor of business aviation for the Aviation Week Network and editor-in-chief of The Weekly of Business Aviation, an Aviation Week market intelligence report.