Sergey Petrossov Knew at a Young Age that He Wanted to be an Entrepreneur
Sergey Petrossov moved to the United States when he was 4-years-old. He lived between California and South Florida, before his family finally decided to call South Florida home when he was 11 or 12. He always had the entrepreneur spirit in him, starting at a young age with a lemonade stand and attempting an import-export business of tire rims when he was in high school. While studying finance at the University of Florida, he became involved with his first start-up that involved live chatting. Being involved with his first start-up, Sergey Petrossov knew he wanted to build companies with technology at the forefront.
After he graduated from college in 2009, he co-founded his own company in education technology called Federal System of Distance Education. It created a cloud-based software that allowed schools and universities to be able to teach students online and remotely and targeted schools with small budgets like those in Russia and Eastern Europe. This was around the time he flew on his first private jet and was introduced to a private jet company that needed help with expanding into Russia and Eastern Europe. He began consulting with them to help them become more efficient and fill seats and became fascinated with the private jet world, soon learning that it was not running efficiently and was outdated.
There were no apps or web-sites that allowed easy booking. Everything was done over the phone and via fax and the private jets were only flying at 10 to 15% capacity. He decided to fix that problem with technology and a sharing model, JetSmarter was born. JetSmarter is a user-friendly app that allows people to book flights with top-rated private jet operators. There is a membership fee that starts at $5,000 a year and goes up to $50,000 per year, but Petrossov and his team are working to decrease the costs to make it more comparable or cheaper than flying commercial. JetSmarter is often known as the “uber of the skies” and is backed by rapper Jay Z and Saudi royalty. Not only does it provide an easy solution for existing jet users, but it also provides unique services for its members like complimentary helicopter services to and from New York airports and shuttle services between cities.
Sergey Petrossov was named to Forbes 30 under 30 list in 2016 and his company, JetSmarter, has a $1.5 billion valuation, with plans on growing and continuing to create unique experiences with cheaper costs for its members.