The near-total shutdown of air travel during the coronavirus pandemic could have been an existential crisis for Clear, a company best known for ferrying travelers to the front of the airport security line.
But despite massive downturns in the number of people flying, the coronavirus pandemic only had a temporary impact on Clear’s airport business, according to revenue documents obtained by OneZero from airports around the country. And at the same time, Clear has set its eyes on expansion in other areas like health and biometric payments, as OneZero reported on Tuesday.
Clear Conquered U.S. Airports. Now It Wants to Own Your Entire Digital Identity.
‘You are your driver’s license, your credit card, your health care card, your building access card’
These documents also detail how the company treated its own frontline workers, promising that their jobs would not be lost and paying for health insurance even while some workers were asked to go on temporary leave.
Clear generates revenue by charging users a $179 annual subscription fee to access its priority security lines in more than 60 airports and sports stadiums across the United States. Some stadiums, like the Seattle Mariners’ T-Mobile Park, have even integrated Clear’s biometric payment system, which allows customers to use only their fingerprint to verify they’re over 21 and pay for a beer. The company says it has more than 5 million members, although that figure also includes its free tier, which allows priority access to sports stadiums.
Clear’s revenue at the Cleveland Hopkins International Airport fell off a cliff in April, falling nearly 45% from $216,885 in March to $121,273 in April.
Clear makes a significant amount of its revenue from airports. It typically shares between 7.5% and 12.5% of its revenue with the airport that generated it — from subscribers who opt in to the program via one of Clear’s kiosks…