Club328 Cuts 328Jet, Premier Is, 14 Pilots
London Biggin Hill Airport-based charter firm PlaneChartering, owner of the loss-making Club328 brand, has disbanded its Fairchild Dornier 328Jet and Hawker Beechcraft Premier Is and laid off 14 of its pilots. Meanwhile, PlaneChartering group CEO Paul Crowther is taking over from Club328’s CEO, Elaine Young, who is leaving. PlaneChartering acquired Southampton, UK-based Club328 from Corporate Jet Services in October. The acquired fleet included one 328Jet, two Premier Is and a Hawker 800B. “We let 14 crew go because we divested the Dornier and Premier fleets,” Crowther told AIN. “However, the group will now embark on an aggressive expansion program. We have just spent $6.5 million on a Hawker 800B, the first of four that will be coming on line with us in the next four months.” He added, “We acquired Club328 for virtually nothing–mainly for the aircraft operating certificate and the debt. Moreover, the 328Jet was simply not suitable for our private charter markets and we always wanted to operate our own types and remove the others,” the latter referring to the 328Jet and Premier I.