San Francisco-based capital equity firm TPG Growth confirmed today that it signed a definitive agreement on December 30 to acquire Travel Management Co. (TMC Jets), an on-demand aircraft charter firm in Elkhart, Ind. TPG Growth, which also owns a stake in private jet membership firm XOJet, is acquiring TMC Jets for an undisclosed amount from founder Pete Liegl, who formed the company in 2006. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter.
In February 2013, XOJet and TMC Jets announced a commercial partnership, though they have remained—and under the new ownership structure will continue to remain—separate entities, according to TMC president Scott Wise. In fact, he stressed TMC will continue to be “neutral” and work with leading broker distribution partners such as Apollo Jets, Sentient Jet, EJM/NetJets and XOJet.
Accordng to TPG Growth, the investment in TMC Jets as “an opportunity to further broaden its presence in private aviation, an industry that has seen multiple years of growth and improving sector dynamics.” TPG indicated that it plans to provide more capital for further investment in TMC, which could further expand its aircraft fleet.
TMC currently operates 68 wholly owned aircraft, including 36 Hawker 400XPs, 29 Hawker 800XPs, two Challenger 604s and a King Air 200. It also has an outstanding order with Nextant Aerospace to convert its Hawker 400XPs to 400XTis. These conversions are currently on hold, Wise told AIN, but could move forward “at a later date.” He said there is a solid business case to add more Challenger 604s to the fleet.
"TPG is thrilled to partner with Scott Wise, Scott Henely and the entire TMC Jet team," commented TPG Growth managing partner Bill McGlashan. "TMC Jets has established its reputation and industry-leading position as the light and mid jet operator of choice to its brokering partners. We are excited to support and enable TMC's growth and development going forward."