Private Jet Market Throttling Up
Tony Velocci , Business Aviation
Inventories of pre-owned heavy, large-cabin and mid-size business jets are continuing to decline, with sales stronger in the last 10 months than in the last 10 years, according to Daniel Jennings, founder and CEO of The Private Jet Company specializing in private jet sales and acquisitions worldwide.
“Prices are eroding, and buyers are responding favorably,” he said. “Even new lenders are entering the market. We haven’t seen demand this strong in years.”
But there may be a darker side to the trend, Jennings pointed out. Driving many of the transactions is a combination of steep oil-price declines impacting all petroleum-exporting countries, growing concerns over devaluation of the Russian ruble and a broad pattern of economic difficulties in China. And, oh, by the way, these just happen to be some of the same regions that helped drive up demand for larger business aircraft when oil prices remained stubbornly high, China’s economic bubble was still expanding and Russia’s financial stability wasn’t in question. China’s Deer Jet, a private aviation provider, is offloading assets big time; more than a third of its fleet is for sale, according to Jennings.
Nigeria, a major oil exporter, is another area where buyers can find many pre-owned business jets for sale, Jennings noted. There are more business aircraft registered there than in all of China. “For the first time, we are seeing foreclosures on large aircraft,” he said. “There are more sellers to come.”
How all of this activity will influence the recovery of the overall business jet market remains to be seen, especially since most original equipment manufacturers will be bringing new products to market in the near future. Jennings believes the most stable market segments will be light and very light jets well suited to serving small, regional airports. “They have a solid base,” Jennings said.