WINGX, the data and insight company, was born out of frustration. Christoph Kohler (pictured) and Richard Koe its founders had both worked at business jet operators and had searched for accurate data to help them make decisions. Unable to find it in a single source they came together and launched their own company – funding it themselves.
Their data allowed customers to track aircraft movements – but most importantly it also explained what was happening. This allowed operators to compare themselves with competitors, helped fuel and FBO companies to bid on new contracts and allowed maintenance shops to forecast demand. This was especially crucial during Covid 19 shutdowns where their data could show exactly what was happening around the world.
Now, 13 years after launching the company they have sold it to JETNET – best known for its aircraft database.
“It allows us to grow internationally and also add configurable dashboards and visualisation to our data solutions. We have a wealth of data in our fleet database and WINGX can help configure this for customers,” says Derek Swaim, CEO, JETNET.
Swaim says that there is little overlap between JETNET’s core customers – which includes manufacturers, aircraft dealers/brokers, and financial institutions – and WINGX’s customers.
This is JETNET’s third acquisition since it was acquired from the founding family by Silversmith Capital Partners in 2022. Silversmith Capital Partners is a private equity firm with $3.3bn under management. JETNET’s first deal was in November 2022 when it acquired Asset Insight, the aircraft valuation and maintenance costs platform. In January 2023 it bought ADS-B Exchange which tracks aircraft movements using aviation enthusiasts’ receivers.
JETNET approached Koe and Kohler just after Silversmith invested. The discussion got more serious at NBAA BACE in Orlando. “We see this as a massive acceleration opportunity,” says Koe. “We have always wanted to build a digital hub to encompass the industry’s relevant data, we’ve been busy building the technology platform to do this and now we have the partnership to power up the insights.”
Koe says that they are excited about combining insights from JETNET’s fleet data with utilisation. He also sees opportunities to work with Rollie Vincent who runs JETNET iQ – a joint venture between Rollie Vincent & Associates and JETNET.
The price is not being disclosed and Swaim says it is not just about the company. “We are really excited to add Christoph, Richard and the WINGX team to JETNET,” says Swaim. “Our vision as a company is to advance aviation intelligence worldwide. This deal really does that.”