Down-Route, the UK-based expense-management and hotel-reservations App and website, has been purchased by a New York-based Family Office. By acquiring the intellectual property, along with the Down-Route name, the new company will now have the resources to further develop the application and bring it to a wider audience in the private-aviation market.
Down-Route founder and CEO Andy Hudson has been offered a stake in the new company and remains very much at the heart of the project.
Hudson says that the acquisition was needed to push the company forward, giving it the capital it needs to expand and integrate new features.
“I’m very pleased with having our new strategic partners,” says Hudson. “They will refresh the company management, and I remain on as a member on the new Board. We will be putting a new top-level management team in place, but I will still have a very active role in the company.”
Hudson says that he is hoping that he will be able to take as many of the current staff over to the new company as possible to ensure continuity in the project, but the UK company as it currently stands will be closed.
For Hudson, the acquisition marks the end of a year-long process, and the beginning of a new chapter in Down-Route’s story.
Hudson founded the company in early-2016 as an expense management and hotel booking smartphone app and website, and the company has a series of agreements in place that allow access to discounted hotel room rates through the App.
The application also enables the operations staff to monitor expenses in real-time from its travelling staff.
With the deal completed, the user experience will be updated and improved to make it even easier to use. Hudson says that the current Down-Route version is around 96% ready, but that the injection of the additional capital will now allow the final elements to be completed and the updated product released to market.
The company will also be looking at ways of integrating its service with other platforms and says that work on this is ongoing quietly in the background, with several companies expressing an interest.
With the European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (EBACE) just around the corner in May, Hudson say that the new company should be ready to launch then.
“While we may not be exhibiting, we will be very much in attendance and demonstrating the improved App to operators and potential collaborators.”