Global Eagle Entertainment Inc announced new luxury connectivity brand PRIVA by Global Eagle last week, replacing its legacy MTN brand which focused solely on yacht connectivity.
Discussing the change, Jeffrey Leddy, Global Eagle CEO said: “Global Eagle is… expanding our capabilities to allow ultra-high net worth individuals to benefit from the company’s extensive businesses in aviation and on land.”
But how new is this exactly, and will the change truly benefit customers? In our April edition, we published a letter from an ETO who explained how a previous incarnation of MTN had a specialised yacht support team, but that new owners at the time had disbanded it, deciding to just have one support team for all industries. As a result of this, the feedback from ETOs was that sometimes its workers were unable to deal with superyacht-specific issues. The specialised yacht team had been re-instated when our April edition went to press, and our ETO X was optimistic that things were heading in the right direction.
Ole-Kristian Sivertsen, senior vice president of maritime at Global Eagle, explained in an interview earlier this year that this new PRIVA rebrand and diversification came about from client demand. “We have had clients with private jets and yachts asking us for a seamless connectivity experience across both,” he says. “It is more economic and efficient for these clients to buy a pool of bandwidth and use it across all their assets – whether that be on land, at sea or in the air.”
So instead of just offering a dedicated yacht service, PRIVA now aims to serve clients across a host of assets, for example on land at a private villa, at sea on a superyacht, and in the air on a private jet. Whilst the UHNI market could obviously benefit from a family-office-style service, only time will tell whether in requiring support workers to know about villas, yachts and jets, users might see a dilution in the quality of each specific service.
However, it has been announced that PRIVA will offer a new 24/7 “VVIP” customer service program, whereby technicians and support teams will be available anytime from PRIVA Technical Concierge centres in Miramar, Florida and Madrid, Spain. We hope this will go some way towards maintaining good support levels and quick solution times in the wake of this change. We also hope this service won’t be charged at additional VVIP pricing.