Delta, Wheels Up Form Private Aviation Partnership


Delta Air Lines and private aviation solutions company Wheels Up have announced their intentions to combine wholly owned Delta subsidiary Delta Private Jets—a private a charter company based at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG)—with Wheels Up. Once combined, the business will continue to operate as Wheels Up with company founder Kenny Dichter remaining in his role as Wheels Up CEO. As part of the deal, Delta Air Lines will hold an equity position in Wheels Up.

“This groundbreaking partnership will democratize private aviation—making the convenience of private jet travel accessible to more consumers,” said Delta CEO Ed Bastian. “Wheels Up’s lifestyle experiences and innovative digital platform, combined with the scale and service of Delta Private Jets, helps further Delta’s mission of connecting people and communities worldwide through travel.”

The partnership will create a fleet of more than 190 private aircraft and a base of over 8,000 members and customers. The transaction is expected to close in early 2020. Exact terms of the deal have not been disclosed.

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Kate O’Connor works as AVweb's Editor-in-Chief. She is a private pilot, certificated aircraft dispatcher, and graduate of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

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