Alyssum Holdings has filed for administration two years after the owner of online charter platform Fly Victor completed its acquisition of RocketRoute, which was founded in 2010 as an online flight planning platform and app. Both the subsidiary companies are for sale by the administrators.
Fly Victor was founded in 2010 by Clive Jackson, who wanted to offer flight-sharing having seen wasted empty legs and seats on business jets. Alyssum was created as a holding company for Fly Victor when the RocketRoute takeover was structured, with $18 million of financing led by BBA Aviation and BP Ventures.
The administrators have set February 28 as the deadline for offers for the companies.
London-based David Rubin and Partners is overseeing the administration of Alyssum, and Hilco Streambank was retained to manage offers for Alyssum’s shareholdings in Fly Victor Limited and RocketRoute, which Jackson claims will carry on business as usual. Fly Victor says it recorded charter bookings of $74 million in 2018.
According to a statement from Fly Victor, "The Board of Alyssum Group have placed our holding company into administration to ensure both RocketRoute and Victor, which are both fully trading going concerns, are able to pursue separate paths and seek new investment through a process managed by Hilco Global and administered by David Rubin and Partners."
Two lawsuits in Florida, one for $30 million, may have driven the decision to wind up Alyssum. Both were reportedly from Louis David Spagnuolo, over the use of the URL privatejet.com.
Delaware-based Don’t Look Media, LLC apparently launched the lawsuit based on a 2015 licensing agreement that enabled it to use the privatejet.com to generate leads it would then convert to bookings. The lawsuit was filed on June 21, 2019, in the U.S. District Court Southern District of Florida. The lawsuit names both Jackson and Alyssum Group as defendants while Spagnuolo, who says he owns privatejet.com, claims Victor never paid any fees from licensing the website.
Defendants Alyssum, Fly Victor, Clive Jackson, et al filed a motion to dismiss the complaint on February 5, and this was granted "without prejudice for Plaintiff to file suit in the forum agreed to by the parties," according to the motion. "The Clerk of Court is directed to close this case and deny as moot any pending motions."