Flapper launches R$2.5m crowdfunding campaign through StartMeUp
Flapper, the Brazilian on-demand charter marketplace, launched a crowdfunding campaign for R$2.5m (about US$500,000) on October 31st, as part of its Series A funding round. Confrapar, one of Brazil’s largest tech venture capital funds and Flapper’s seed investor has committed R$5m ($1m) with this round.
The company intends to use this funding for three purposes: setting up operations in four new countries, investing in technology and continuing relationships with local air taxi companies.
Flapper CEO Paul Malicki told Corporate Jet Investor that the company is in expansion mode. “We are opening charter and empty legs operations in four new countries: Chile, Argentina Colombia and Mexico. That means a local team, payment system and salespeople, with the opportunity to offer charter, empty legs and possibly shared flights,” he said.
The funding will help grow Flapper’s tech team as well, which is in its final stage of adding multiple currency options on the platform. Malicki says the team plans to continue “testing routes and cultivating large partnerships with local air taxi companies as part our second vertical”.
According to the campaign pitch: “Flapper increased its revenues in 2019 by 251% and intends to maintain three-digit growth in 2020.”
This year has seen a dip in business flights for Flapper, said Malicki, but an increase in leisure, ambulance, and cargo flights. “We are seeing a boom in helicopter transfers at the moment. We had as many as 11 flights from Rio de Janeiro to Angra dos Reis, a resort destination, on one weekend,” he said
Demand is back up, as of October, with a 500% growth in quotations from October 2019 and 390% for the whole of the third quarter.
Malicki said it is difficult to fulfil all the demand because people are requesting a single-seat or charter route which is not operating at the moment. “To counter this, we are looking into some pool features and looking to expand routes towards the end of the year and release some innovative app features,” he said.
To contribute to the campaign – which has already achieved 40% of its target – investors must sign up to StartMeUp within the next 30 days. The minimum investment is R$ 5,000 (approximately $165) using Boleto or card, with an offer of a 5.88% stake in Flapper.
“Considering a potential IPO [Initial Public Offering] in a few years, this will help us build a pot of equity to investors to get ourselves ready with corporate governance,” said Malicki.