The major operator of in-flight Internet gets more cash on hand: I've raised concerns about the uptake rate needed by Aircell's Gogo Inflight Internet service to produce the revenue required to return a profit. But it's also been clear that not enough detail has ever been exposed to know Aircell's cost sharing with airlines, nor its ongoing costs.
Whatever those may be—and I don't suggest the firm was in a cash crunch—Aircell has $35m more in its pocket to keep operations running for whatever period of time that will cover. Certainly, Aircell needs capital to build out in Canada and (eventually) Mexico and the Caribbean.
Aircell's CEO spoke to the San Francisco Chronicle, which said he "declined to offer financial details, but said that the company has made major financial improvements and is on the 'path to profitability.'"
I just used Gogo on my trip mid-day down to the Macworld 2011 conference 10 days ago, and it was invaluable as always. I finished projects, kept up on email, and arrived without having anything on my plate to deal with.
Updated: A Bloomberg report on Monday suggests an initial public offering is planned, and says Aircell has raised $600m to date, a staggering sum, but not surprising for building a nationwide cellular network (albeit pointing up), ground station operations, and equipping planes at as much as $100,000 a pop.