VistaJet landed a stunning double deal at EBACE today by placing a $1.3 billion aircraft order with Bombardier and at the same time announcing it is buying the Canadian manufacturer’s international charter operator Skyjet.

The two companies have signed an MoU for the acquisition of Skyjet International. The deal includes Skyjet’s bases in Farnborough, Dubai and Hong Kong, and makes VistaJet the second-largest private jet company outside North America, behind NetJets.

Both parties have agreed not to disclose the sum VistaJet has paid for Skyjet International, and the deal depends on a final contract being signed by the end of June at the latest, says VistaJet’s Group CEO Bing Chen. Skyjet’s operations in North America are not affected by the deal.

VistaJet's Bing Chen, Bombardier chairman Pierre Beaudoin, VistaJet chairman Thomas Flohr, Bombardier's Bob Horner

The aircraft order comprises 35 aircraft with an option of an additional 25 airframes comprising 11 Challenger 605s, 13 Learjet 60XRs and 11 Learjet 85, making the Swiss-based company Bombardier’s largest customer. The huge order will triple the size of the existing VistaJet fleet.

Chen says this is a hugely exciting time for the three-year-old company, heralding a new era in the business as VistaJet expands its operations worldwide. “Our success is due in part to the popularity and proven performance of our Bombardier business jets, and as our business continues to grow globally, we are confident that our relationship with the Canadian company will produce exceptional results,” he says.

“We are becoming, effectively, a ‘business jet airline’ with our business plan producing profits from day one. Our ‘model’ demonstrates that we have a different approach to our marketplace and we are highly innovative in the way in which we operate. This is clearly appreciated by our customers worldwide,” Chen says.

“Our business plan has built-in targets and we believe that if you take overall market share, the total number of ‘owned’ aircraft and geographical spread into consideration, it will be possible to argue that we will be the number one company in the market sector by 2012 when we aim to have around 85 aircraft flying in our company’s colours.”

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Source: Flight Daily News