Aquila Aviation Ventures, a new group focused on investing in promising private aviation firms, has been established through a partnership between venture capital firm City+Ventures and business aircraft brokerage and consultancy Mente Group. As a result, Omaha, Nebraska-based City+Ventures will invest in Dallas-based Mente, which will be one of two companies operating under Aquila. The other is Millbrook Air, a New York-based aircraft management and charter operator previously operating under City+Ventures.
Leading Aquila as CEO will be Brian Proctor, previously Mente’s president and CEO. “Aquila Aviation Ventures will identify and invest in high-growth firms within the private aviation sector,” he said. “And as part of the partnership, Mente Group has been recapitalized, providing it with growth capital to expand its platform and provide new and innovative services. The Millbrook operation will serve as a launch point for new products and concepts, taking advantage of unfulfilled segments in aviation.”
City+Ventures co-founder Danny White explained that his firm’s expertise in identifying high-growth companies with a focus on customer experiences in industries—including construction, auto dealerships, and real estate management—will mesh well with Proctor’s aviation expertise, ultimately benefitting Aquila.