Executive Jet Aviation (EJA) could more than double its Dassault Falcon 2000 fleet by early in the next century, says the world's leading fractional-ownership company.

Dassault's $500 million sale of 24 Falcon 2000 business jets to EJA is the single largest order for the transcontinental widebody aircraft to date.

Richard Santulli, EJA's chairman, thinks that total orders will be "far more significant than just 24 aircraft". Depending on market conditions, EJA envisions buying up to eight aircraft annually over the next "four, five or six years."

The Falcon 2000s will be used in the company's US NetJets fractional-ownership programme, but Santulli plans to hold discussions this month about Falcon 2000s for the NetJets Europe operation, which also now sells shares in Cessna Citation S/II and VII aircraft. The Falcon 50 and 900 may also be considered, he indicates.

EJA will not receive any Falcon 2000s until 1999 as there are no aircraft available for delivery this year, although Santulli hopes to get early delivery of a demonstration aircraft. As it now stands, EJA will take delivery of seven Falcon 2000s in 1999 and a minimum of five per year thereafter. EJA's core fleet will total four Falcon 2000s. Santulli says that the Falcon 2000 fills a gap between the Citation X and Gulfstream IV business jets.

Source: Flight International