RedBird Capital Partners increases ownership in Blade

RedBird Capital Partners increases ownership in Blade

19-Jan-2023 Source: Blade Air Mobility

Blade Air Mobility, Inc. (Nasdaq:BLDE, “Blade” or the “Company”), a technology-powered global air mobility platform and RedBird Capital Partners (“RedBird”) announced today that RedBird has increased its ownership in Blade to more than 5% and that RedBird partner Andrew Lauck will become a board observer.

RedBird’s founder, Gerry Cardinale, has been invested in Blade since 2016, and collectively the RedBird and Blade teams have closely collaborated as each has built out its respective aviation business. Blade’s core operations in last mile air mobility, jet charter, and organ transplant flights overlap with RedBird’s existing aviation portfolio, and both companies expect to be leading supporters of aviation’s eventual transition towards Electric Vertical Aircraft (“EVA” or “eVTOL”) technology.

RedBird and Blade will also leverage tactical alliances across RedBird’s portfolio to accelerate Blade’s growth objectives across all of its business lines. RedBird’s global sports and media properties provide a natural complement to Blade’s urban air mobility solutions for fans attending large sports and entertainment events at congested locations.

“Gerry has developed some of the most exciting platforms in aviation, sports and entertainment and the strengthening of our partnership with RedBird will allow us to supercharge our offerings to Blade fliers in the U.S and Europe,” said Rob Wiesenthal, Blade’s CEO. “The partnership will also allow us to build our fast-growing organ transplant flight business and source acquisitions that can benefit from our global brand, infrastructure and tech platform – ultimately accelerating our timeline to achieving profitability while enhancing our growth trajectory.”

“Blade is an integral part of our broader aviation investment strategy which looks to benefit from current aviation market growth as well as future disruption from the transition of helicopters to Electric Vertical Aircraft,” said Gerry Cardinale, RedBird Founder and Managing Partner. “Rob and I have worked together in various capacities for the last two decades, and I have tremendous confidence in his vision and capacity to lead and shape the sector for the benefit of Blade users and shareholders.”

Cardinale continued, “Our investment style is to identify and scale investments in closely held founder-led businesses where we can bring true synergies and strategic support by virtue of our domain expertise across our core industry verticals. In the case of Blade, we will look to leverage the breadth and depth of our aviation, sports, media and experiential consumer properties to further Blade’s strategic growth objectives and continue to provide premium offerings to its end users consistent with the Blade brand.”

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