Wheels Up adds to ‘Amazon for Aviation’ with partnership with KKR’s AIrMed
AirMed, the global air medical transportation company, has chosen Wheels Up as its exclusive aviation partner.
Wheels Up will sell a new membership product that will provide medical evacuation for travellers provided by AirMed. AirMed has its own fleet of business jets that will operate the flights.
“Peace of mind is priceless,” said Kenny Dichter, chair and CEO of Wheels Up in a call with CJI. “This is a new tier of membership for us with an enourmas TAM [Total Addressable Market]. AirMed is the perfect strategic partner for us.”
Wheels Up and AIrMed are still finalising the product but the annual policy with provide coverage for 12 individuals. “It doesn’t matter how you get to your destination – you can even drive more than 150 miles – but if something happens you know you are getting back in a jet,” says Dichter.
The multi-year partnership allows AirMed to benefit from Wheels Up’s sales and marketing expertise. As AirMed will manage any incident it is also a low risk product for Wheels Up.
AirMed is part of Global Medical Response – a pre-hospital healtcare company that offers medical transportation, home care and works for the US federal government. KKR created the company by merging helicopter and jet operator Air Medical Group with American Medical Response. In March 2022 AirMed acquired business jet and medical flight operator GrandView Aviation for more than $200m.
CJI Take: Kenny Dichter has often talked about creating the “Amazon of Aviation” and this agreement – adding a new low risk product – fits this well. AirMed get Wheels Up’s impressive sales and marketing machine. It is also not the first time that Wheels Up has worked with KKR. The private equity company funded the company’s first King Airs.