Mirai Claims Charter Booking Speed Record
There is a plethora of app-based brokers active in the bizjet marketplace, all aiming to make the process of booking a private flight as easy and intuitive as hailing a taxi. But one of the latest entrants to this space—Mirai Flights—has a USP it believes will give it the edge over the competition.
"I was on one of the investors' rounds, and they asked me, 'What is unique about your app?'" recalls company co-founder and CEO Irakli Litanishvili. "There were about five people, one of them worked with other platforms. They said, 'This is not a problem, we can book an airplane.' And I said: 'OK, in what time?' They said, 'Within 30 minutes.' And I said: 'Within 30 minutes you may find the airplane but are you able to pay for it? Are you able to confirm?' No. With Mirai Flights, within eight minutes max you can go through the whole process."
As well as the time saved, Litanishvili argues this swift end-to-end transaction delivers peace of mind and certainty. And for empty-leg flights, which the company has targeted in particular as part of its wider objective of reducing the sector's carbon emissions by increasing efficiency, the company claims to be able to complete the booking in under a minute.
The pitch clearly impressed its audience: in April, Mirai Flights concluded an investment round that raised $3 million, which the company will use to roll its service out in Europe including the UK. Litanishvili says his target is for the app to broker 4% of the 300,000 flights per year that take place in the region. Pending a successful A-round of further financing, which he hopes will take place in the next 18 months, entry into the U.S. market would follow.
EBACE has more than a little significance for Mirai. It was at this event in 2017 that Litanishvili first met Aviapages founder, Evgeny Chuprov, and together the pair came up with the Mirai concept. Chuprov now serves as non-executive director of Mirai.
Although Mirai is headquartered in London, and Litanishvili is from Georgia, he can be found at the Transport Malta booth: a number of companies he founded, under the wider Aim of Emperor umbrella, including an AOC holder, are based there. The present geopolitical situation has brought some challenges, but Litanishvili's primary concern is for his staff.
"My mother is half-Ukrainian, half-Russian; my father's Georgian," he says. "I have 300 staff, and my family—I link them all together. This is my responsibility. There are people from Ukraine sitting in the Malta office, all crying; and they're sitting with people from Moscow, from London. We sent a couple of cargo airplanes from Malta down to Ukraine with support. That was my personal decision. We can't really influence on a bigger scale. We need to work, to continue, and maybe create something that finally helps to change the mentality of someone who has different ideas in their heads."