Interview: How Sergey Petrossov revolutionized private jet business

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JetSmarter is the Uber for Private Jets
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Sergey Petrossov Profile PictureSergey Petrossov, Chief Executive Officer and founder of JetSmarter, is one of those few people who are in the field of aviation but at the same time respect the importance of latest IT trends to fortify their business. 

The Arabian Gazette managed to have a rendezvous with Mr. Petrossov and inquired him about how he created his business and then re-invented it with the advent of JetSmarter.

AG: How the journey of JetSmarter all began?

SP: I booked my first private jet flight in 2009 which introduced me to the outdated nature of the private jet industry; its brick and mortar process of picking up the phone, waiting for hours and speaking to numerous people in order to charter jet, which was not doing any service to both the company and its clients.

In 2012, I spoke to the carriers I had established relationships with and discussed how large of an impact an app to charter a private plane would have on the industry. In August 2012, I made it a reality and created the beta version of JetSmarter, sharing it with an exclusive group of industry experts and frequent private jet users. In March 2013, JetSmarter was launched globally. 

AG: How has the market for private jet charter business evolved since the launch of JetSmarter in 2012 and how do you see its future?

SP: Over the years, my passion for private aviation has grown significantly. It’s about time that the landscape of commercial airliners is disrupted with a quality service that solves the arduous and generally unpleasant experience that is commercial travel. As for private aviation, I quickly ascertained that there was something missing from the industry—the ease of booking flights quickly via a mobile app, that’s it. With the creation of JetSmarter, we’ve simplified the booking process, provided free and discounted flights to regular travelers and consumers, and grown the company globally as we continue to solve problems for people.

Our goal is to continue to grow the private aviation industry and to ultimately make all air travel private. 

AG: Who are your major investors?

PS: Our investors include members of the Saudi Royal Family as well as a number of top executives from major companies across the globe. 

AG: What are your expansion plans?

PS: We are continuously expanding our services and enhancing our JetDeal and JetShuttle offerings. Our current scope includes: China, Japan Taiwan, Korea, Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand as well as Asian Pacific countries like Australia and New Zealand. As our business continues to grow, we look forward to not only improving upon these features but introducing new ones as well, on top of offering more routes in popular areas across the globe. 

AG: How do you envision the market growth for private jet flyers?

PS: Private aviation is a $60 billion industry worldwide and the global commercial airline business is 2-3x of that. We anticipate private aviation revenues to grow at least threefold in the next decade.

AG: What are the other areas that you plan to explore laterally along with this revolutionary concept?

PS: JetSmarter has revolutionized the private jet industry, as we believe our users deserve a convenient way to book a private jet. Currently, we offer our users three different services, which are as follows:

1.) JetCharter: Users can customize their trip based on destination and aircraft and allows them to charter a jet from anywhere around the globe.

2.) JetDeals: These are one-way flights are offered exclusively through JetSmarter and are free for members and offered at discounted rates for all app users.

3.) JetShuttles: This service allows travelers to book a single seat on an already scheduled flight and is available in select markets throughout the U.S., with plans to expand to more cities globally in the near future.

To further heighten our clients’ overall travel experience, we recently launched a Member Experiences Team, providing members with access to exclusive events, premium tables at fine restaurants, tee times at prestigious golf courses, and more. 

AG: How do you think the concept of private jet flyers through the mobile application will impact the travelling business?

PS: Our main priority at JetSmarter has been to make the private aviation industry more accessible to everyone. When it comes to flying commercial, travelers often find themselves waiting in the misery of long security lines, or having to deal with the hassle of baggage claim. When flying private and booking a jet through JetSmarter, the inconvenience is eliminated as travelers simply drive up to their jet, get in, get settled, and take off at their convenience.

JetSmarter offers a unique business model unlike any other private jet venture. JetSmarter is the only private travel service company to operate by way of an innovative app technology. Our aim is to make flying private something accessible to the masses not just a privileged 1 percent. We offer 4,000 free flights each month to our members who have access to these flights daily. With our JetDeal offerings, we provide free flights to members as well as steeply discounted and relatively affordable flights for non-members. As our business continues to grow, we look forward to not only improving upon these features but introducing new ones. 

AG: How will you explain your “hitching a ride” concept?

PS: Based on the great success of JetShuttles, our members love JetSharing. People love connecting on the way. Great networking and the prospect of new friendships make for something of a “country club in the sky.” 

AG: Can you share your company revenue figures and goals?

PS: JetSmarter has seen a significant growth since its launch in March 2013, growing 15-20 percent each month. To date, JetSmarter has had 300,000+ downloads. So we expect that growth to continue exponentially. 

AG: How important is 24/7 customer service for JetSmarter?

PS: Round-the-clock customer service is an integral part of JetSmarter’s business model. Once our users book a flight, we provide them with an aviation specialist who can answer any questions they may have. Now with the addition of our Member Experiences Team, we are further enhancing customer service for our members. 

AG: What better business environment do you seek?

PS: We’re committed to building a JetSmarter-friendly world with increased trust in our business, sustainable growth and development of services.

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