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North Texas group aquires Seattle Avionics

🕐 3 min read

Argyle-based AFV Partners LLC has acquired Seattle Avionics, a leading provider of general aviation applications, FAA-certified and geo-referenced charts and flight data, and augmented reality (AR) technology, from its founders. Terms of the transaction, which closed on Sept. 3, 2020, were not disclosed.

Seattle Avionics was co-founded in 2002 by John Rutter and Steve Podradchik with the mission to offer an affordable yet technologically advanced and easy-to-use flight application for the general aviation market. Seattle Avionics has established its FlyQ EFB application as the No.1 rated iPad aviation app and has a track record of delivering leading innovation to the general aviation space, most recently with the introduction of AR technology for situational awareness, Slingshot for wireless ChartData transfer for in-panel avionics, 3D synthetic vision capabilities, a visual logbook and a unique “4D predictive weather” map with 17 weather layers, including the ability to show past, current and future weather for all altitudes.

Seattle Avionics creates compelling pre-flight and in-flight user experiences with its cloud-based solutions providing direct user access to flight planning, weather, fuel prices and group document management. Rutter and Podradchik will join AFV Partner’s aviation vertical in leadership positions.

Tony Aquila is the founder, chairman and CEO of AFV Partners, which was formed in 2019 as a long-term permanent capital investor. In January 2020, Aquila’s AFV Partners acquired Aircraft Performance Group, a leading global provider of proprietary aircraft performance, weight and balance and flight planning software solutions. In March 2020 AFV Partners acquired RocketRoute Limited, a leading global aviation services company that provides flight-planning, fuel, concierge and marketplace services through a single integrated SaaS platform.

“We are impressed with what Steve and John have built over the past years and making them a part of our aviation vertical will significantly accelerate our offering for the general aviation and data market,” said Aquila. “We will cross-leverage our platform technologies within our aviation vertical to deliver unprecedented value to the ecosystem while adding critical chart and navigation data capabilities gaining access to a $1B chart data market. The acquisition of SA is the next cornerstone in executing our playbook of additional complimentary acquisitions to support total growth and the evolving product and data needs of our global customer base; and it confirms our strong commitment to continuous innovation across all our verticals.”

“We are extremely excited to be bring our technology, apps, ChartData, and 17-year expertise to AFV Partners,” said Seattle Avionics’ CEO, Steve Podradchik. “The combined resources will significantly increase the release of innovative feature enhancements for the whole product portfolio, including FlyQ EFB, and rapidly expand the depth and geographic coverage of our ChartData offerings.”

“I have been deeply impressed with the entire AFV Partners team, especially their impressive products, vision for the space and their focus on accelerating our ChartData business,” said John Rutter, President of Seattle Avionics. “We’re passionate about bringing our ChartData to even more OEMs globally and enhancing both the depth and breadth of products we offer.”

The law firm of Kirkland & Ellis advised AFV Partners on the transaction.

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