Forget the slowing Indian economy, for some, it’s still booming. The world’s largest business aviation jet company VistaJet says it is witnessing 25% growth in demand for its planes in India from entrepreneurs.
The Zurich-based company, which offers long-haul flights at hourly rates in the $12,000-18 ,000 range, says three to four of its 37 Global Express planes are constantly hired by Indian companies and it plans to station about four more planes here by mid-2014.
“We have been here for 18 months and are witnessing 20-25 % growth. We are aware of the overall slowdown and fall of the rupee. But successful Indian entrepreneurs are travelling and we are seeing an unprecedented demand,” said VistaJet Holdings chairman Thomas Flohr.
VistaJet, a privately-held company that does not share its financials, currently has a fleet of 37 business jets and ordered 40 more at the recent Paris Air Show with a total order book worth $5 billion. “We are not witnessing any slowdown in India. In fact in the current situation , buying packages in terms of hours for business jets make more sense than buying and maintaining aircraft,” he said.
Foreign business jet companies are upbeat for one more reason. The Directorate General of Civil Aviation recently banned international flights by Indian charter companies and asked the latter to resume those flights only after getting all the required clearances.