CitationAir has stopped selling fractional shares in new aircraft and ceased renewals for current fractional-share customers, the Cessna Aircraft subsidiary confirmed to AIN yesterday. Effective last week, “CitationAir will be streamlining our offerings to deliver those products in our portfolio that have demonstrated the greatest customer demand,” CitationAir president and CEO William Schultz wrote in an email sent to employees.
When CitationAir founder and CEO Steve O’Neill left the company at the beginning of November, the transition in leadership was expected to be nearly seamless, especially since the man who was promoted to succeed him had been with the fractional provider as long as O’Neill himself.
William (Bill) Schultz, previously the company’s executive vice president, was named to the top position in September, two months before O’Neill’s departure.
Cessna Takes Full Reins at CitationAir
Cessna Aircraft yesterday completed its acquisition of business aviation flight services provider CitationAir. With the move, CitationAir becomes a wholly owned subsidiary of Cessna but maintains its separate operation. The original company–called CitationShares until the name was changed this past October–was started in 2000 as a 50-50 joint venture between Cessna and TAG Aviation Holding.
Responding to the brave new world of recession-shaped business aviation, CitationShares last month in New York City unveiled a rebranding that sees the company change its name to CitationAir by Cessna and promote the scope of its offerings beyond the fractional operation it has been since its founding in 2000 as a joint venture between Cessna and Geneva-based Tag Aviation when the two companies bought Wayfarer Starshares (founded in 1998 and
Flexjet, Bombardier Aerospace’s fractional-share program, announced a reconfigured product offering at NBAA, with an emphasis on its ability to offer supplemental lift and other aviation solutions to corporate flight departments.
The fractional share marketplace is changing rapidly in response to the lengthy global recession. While most fractional operators already reduced staffing levels to match lower levels of customer activity, it wasn’t until September 11 that NetJets announced layoffs of 350 nonunion employees.
Responding to the brave new world of recession-shaped business aviation, CitationShares this morning in New York City unveiled a rebranding that sees the company change its name to CitationAir by Cessna and promote the scope of its offerings beyond the fractional operation it has been since its founding in 2000 as a joint venture between Cessna and Geneva-based Tag Aviation when the two companies bought Wayfarer Starshares (founded in 1998 an
The recession has dealt an enormous blow to the fractional share industry. Rapidly declining used-aircraft prices and fewer flying hours have affected the industry to the point that most fractional operators have shrunk during the past year, deferred new aircraft deliveries, cut staffing and explored new ways to keep flying. Business has been so bad at the fractionals that some pundits are questioning whether the business model is broken.