Club328 has launched two block charter programmes designed to generate a regular client base and sustain a stable income from charter flights for the Southampton-based operator and maintenance company. The launch comes ahead of delivery of the third of four Beechcraft Premier I light jets on order.
Club328’s first programme, SkyBond, is touted as “an investment opportunity for high net-worth individuals who regularly travel by business jet”. In exchange for 25 flying hours a year, customers pay £1 million ($1.75 million) that is held in escrow, with the interest on the capital being accrued by Club328. After a six-year term the £1 million is repaid in full.
“SkyBond members effectively fly for free over the six-year term and the costs will not go up,” says Mike Farge, Club328 managing director. The Premier I and the Dornier 328Jet are offered for £2,100 an hour and £3,300 an hour respectively. “We will only offer six bonds in the first year and so far we have attracted a lot of interest in this product, mostly from the UK and Monaco area.” The second programme, SkyClub, is a standard “competitively priced” block charter programme selling flying hours in 10h and 25h chunks. Membership starts at £30,000 for 10h on the Premier I.
“The more business we generate the more Premier Is we plan to acquire,” Farge says. Club328 has two of the six-seat jets in service and a further two on order. The next aircraft is set for delivery in May, but strong demand for the aircraft has persuaded the company to push for earlier delivery.
KATE SARSFIELD / LONDON
Source: Flight International