Fractional operator hopes takeover of MJE will provide impetus to catch up with transatlantic sister business

The European arm of fractional operator NetJets has taken over control of sub-fractional members club Marquis Jet Europe (MJE) to boost promotion of the scheme.

NetJets Europe is expected to finalise its 100% acquisition of MJE this week after merging operations into a joint company three months ago. Robert Dranitzke, NetJets Europe director of business development, says: "NetJets investors could see that if Marquis Jet had the money behind it in Europe, with a bigger budget for advertising, sales and public relations, it could have a huge potential."

MJE was established three years ago by private UK investors alongside funding from its US parent Marquis Jet, to sell smaller chunks of NetJets fractions to European customers. The company now has around 180 members, but is lagging behind the US operation, which is selling around 100 of its 25h Marquis Jet Cards a month. NetJets Europe decided to bring the MJE operation in-house to increase resources and catch up with US sales.

NetJets Europe is in the process of hiring 10 additional sales directors to plug gaps in the company's European coverage, including Germany, Greece, Russia and Turkey as well as adding to teams in other territories.

Dranitzke says the sales teams will be combined, which will eliminate any previous agendas. "Our salesmen will be able to offer best advice to clients, rather than leaning towards either the card or a fraction," he says.

NetJets Europe has increased MJE's target to 250 new members this year from 150 in 2003 as a result of the increased spending. NetJets Europe will take delivery of 20 new aircraft this year taking its fleet to 60. Of the four aircraft already delivered since January, the Gulfstream IV-SP is sold out, and a GV is 50% sold, says Dranitzke.



Source: Flight International