NBAA 09:Flexjet beefs up its product offering

London
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Bombardier Flexjet has launched initiatives designed to stimulate sales of its block charter and fractional ownership offerings that have been hit by the economic downturn.

The first program - dubbed the Gold Edition jet card - offers "behind-the-scenes access at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Canada" from 26 February to 1 March 2010.

As a special edition version of its Flexjet 25 Jet Card, the Gold Edition gives the customers access for two to the closing ceremony, the men's ice hockey gold medal game, the figure skating gala exhibition and the three short-track speed skating gold medal races.

"We continually search for ways to create unique travel opportunities that provide unparalleled access for our owners, wherever their travels take them", says Sylvain Levesque, vice-president marketing, Flexjet 25. The 2010 Gold Edition is available in limited numbers and prices start at $122,900.

Flexjet has also launched a supplemental lift program targeted at corporate flight departments. "Given the current scrutiny [by the national press and politicians] regarding the use of company aircraft, this program will offer back-up lift and multiple travel and useage solutions, such as walk away leases and jet cards for flight departments", says Flexjet president Fred Reid.

He admits the economic crisis has shaken the second largest fractional ownership company, which has a fleet of around 90 business jets.

"The events of the past year have taken everyone by surprise", says Reid. "The downturn itself was not unexpected, but the speed and scale at which it took hold was alarming".

By the end of 2008 the exit rate across the fractional industry rose well above the typical 5-6% rate in any given year. "We have been winded by the number of asset writedowns, but have continued to make an operating profit. This crisis has taught us to be smart, listen to our customers and react accordingly".