With the domestic and international aviation industry describing downward trajectories every passing day, the surprise exception has been the general aviation segment. By the end of last week, three business jet manufacturers had racked up fleet orders that were, altogether, worth $3.5 billion.
Fractional provider NetJets placed a firm order for $1.9 billion worth of Gulfstream G450s and G550s, which it said would ''significantly expand'' its large-cabin fleet. NetJets will take delivery of 20 G450s and 20 G550s between 2012 and the end of 2016, at a rate of four of each model, every year.
Bombardier Aerospace announced a ''significant business jet sale'' for 110 Learjet 60XRs, worth up to $1.5 billion from an undisclosed European customer. The deal includes a firm order for 25 twinjets, worth approximately $340 million, and conditional orders for the balance 85. Deliveries are scheduled to begin next year.
Cessna's order was more modest in comparison, worth $87 million, and was awarded by Canadian aircraft charter and management firm, Execaire. It consisted of four Citation Mustangs, three Sovereigns and two XLS+s.