Updated: Sep 30, 2020
iFLY, the world leader in indoor skydiving with close to 100 tunnels built in 19 countries over the past 20 years, has continued to evolve even while the world was on lockdown. There were major changes made in recent months: in the ownership and in the organizational structure. Simon Ward tells us about them in an interview we conducted for publication on THE VISION website and in the newsletter.
We remember Simon Ward as one of the contributors to the success of the Indoor Skydiving 2020 | Global Summit (ISGS) held at Castelló d’Empúries in early February. After he had taken over as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) from his predecessor Dave Kirchhoff (formerly CEO of Weightwatchers), who had succeeded iFLY’s founder Alan Metni in the role, Simon agreed to be an ISGS panelist towards the end of 2019.
As it turns out, it was at precisely this time that he initiated the negotiations for the sale of the company and, almost concurrently, got started on developing the blueprint for its comprehensive restructure. Less than one year later, iFLY is under new ownership and its corporate structure marked by several different divisions.
Tunnel manufacturing, formerly known as SkyVenture, is now iFLY Tunnel Systems. The other three parts are iFLY Franchising, US Retail, which consists of the 35 tunnels in America, and the International Division.
As part of the sale, Simon elected to return to the UK and run the International Division. The ex Chief Operating Officer, Matt Ryan, returned to the company as CEO in Austin, Texas.
Where the major differences come into the picture is how each of these divisions is supported. Simon elaborates on that in the interview.
This is a trailer for the full-length interview which will be available from early October.