Thinking of flying private? Verijet has a fresh new approach.
Case study: “Taking Back the Skies”
Imagine hailing a private jet in much the same way you can hail a car with a ride-sharing app.
Now, give that jet a small carbon footprint and next-level safety features. Make it quiet. Sanitize it between flights. Oh, and make it affordable.
That’s Richard Kane’s vision, and IBM is helping make it a reality.
“With Verijet, someone searches for a private flight, and we can respond instantly and give them a price. Our AI has already checked that everything is safe and legal and available, and it’s a firm, fixed price. This capability opens private flying to the general public in a way that’s never been done before.” — Richard Kane, Chairman and CEO, Verijet
For years, booking a private flight meant calling a private booking agent, whose personnel would haggle with operators and pilots and levy substantial upcharges.
“They would charge between 7% and 20% for this, it would take hours to get a confirmation that you could fly, and you would be paying all of these intermediates,” says Kane.
So, he set out to build an optimization engine that would do the work of a team of schedulers at the click of a button, thereby eliminating upcharges and making flights more affordable. He partnered with a private aviation company called JetBird, taking on its fleet as a starting point.
“We started out with 70 aircraft and about 1,000 customer bookings every 10 days,” says Kane. “For a carrier of that size, there can be 16 quintillion possible routing solutions. We have to figure out which plane gets which customer. And then which planes need maintenance, when. Which crew is going to fly each plane, how many hours the crew will have to sleep, how far their hotels are from the airport, how long their drive will be during traffic … The list goes on and on.”