Light jet manufacturer Eclipse Aviation has a deal to supply New Delhi-based
Club One Air ” a fractional ownership company offering charter flights - with ten Eclipse 500s.
Four aircraft are due to be delivered this year and the remaining six in 2009.
”I think it”s a very affordable solution,” said Club One Air managing director, Manav Singh. ”Nobody has a plane that”s as affordable to acquire and operate as the Eclipse.”
”We plan to get the middle class of the country to start chartering aircraft. We are in negotiations to buy a substantially larger fleet and I do hope to conclude those negotiations before the end of the year.”
Operations will initially to be focused on Delhi and Mumbai, but the company has identified ”over 25 small industrial towns” that could eventually be served by charter services. He is also looking at adopting a similar ”seat on demand” model to that used by DayJet in the USA. The Eclipse 500s will be operated by a separate company promoted by Singh.
Club One Air already offers nine larger business jets for charter as the country”s largest non-scheduled operator, but Singh says the potential customer base for these services is limited to around 10,000 people.
Eclipse delivered 98 of 104 aircraft built in 2007, with total sales approaching 2,700 aircraft.