The Jet-Set: Sergey Petrossov and JetSmarter Take Off with App for Private Air Travel

Sergey Petrossov, the 29-year-old entrepreneur who launched  JetSmarter — a service that facilitates connecting people with private aircraft across the globe by enabling travelers to book a private jet by using a mobile app for individual seats or the entire plane — came up with the idea for his new business venture when he flew on a private jet for the first time in 2009. He was amazed, not merely by the luxury but by how inefficient and analog the system of booking a private plane was for the consumer.  

Sergey Petrossov, who was born in Russia and raised since a small child in Florida, considers himself an entrepreneur. His business experience started early. While still in high school, he began an import-export company for automobile tire rims. Then, as a student at the University of Florida, he became interested in computer science and part of a startup for live chatting. “I knew I wanted to go in technology,” he said. Sergey Petrossov’s next business venture was as co-founder of an educational startup for cloud-based software for schools and universities in Russian and Eastern Europe. His next enterprise is the one that really took off to new heights — JetSmarter, which combines Petrossov’s love of aviation and technology.

 JetSmarter was launched through Sergey Petrossov taking a hands-on approach and going to aviation trade shows. “We bootstrapped a small tech team in 2012, built an app, met with industry people, raised a little bit of money, and launched,” the entrepreneur told JetSmarter, which has been nicknamed the Uber for private air travel, facilitates people booking flights anywhere around the world, including private charters or jets shared with other members. Today the company has 14,000 paid members and investors including Jay-Z and the Saudi royal family.

JetSmarter members pay up to $15,000 a year for privileges that range from the ability to schedule flights to taking a journey on a trip with free space. JetSmarter may have found its niche and is valued at $1.5 billion dollars, according to the Miami Herald, and perhaps taking the future of air travel to a whole new level.

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