VistaJet’s fleet is now composed solely of large-cabin Bombardier Challengers and Globals after the company retired its last remaining Learjet 60—the aircraft type that the operator started with in 2004. Since then, the charter firm operated 20 Learjets sporting its silver metallic-gray and single-red-stripe livery, collectively accumulating 42,962 hours over 18,262 flights.
“Today is a very emotional day. The Learjet 60 was my first aircraft and the catalyst for the company we know as VistaJet today,” said company founder and chairman Thomas Flohr. The rise in demand for long-range flights and large-cabin aircraft prompted VistaJet to realign its fleet strategy, he noted.
In June 2013, VistaJet announced its intention to offer an all-Challenger and -Global fleet when it placed an order with Bombardier for 20 Challenger 350s. The company’s fleet now numbers 45: a mix of Challenger 350s, 605s and 850s, as well as Global 5000s and 6000s.
Three of the Global 5000s are based at VistaJet’s U.S. operation, where its aircraft are operated by partner Jet Aviation. According to a spokeswoman, the company’s U.S. fleet will more than double in the next 12 months with the addition of four more jets (exact models yet to be determined).
This follows VistaJet U.S.’s opening of its North American headquarters for sales and marketing in New York City’s Soho district late last year. VistaJet U.S. is headed by Ron Silverman, with the executive sales team rounded out by Tom Thynne, senior vice president of sales; Katelyn Kaye, vice president of sales; and Thomas Fry, marketing director of the Americas. Thynne was recently hired as a U.S. West Coast sales representative to expand VistaJet’s reach into this market region, though the spokeswoman added, “His sales zone is U.S.-wide.”
“Reception of the VistaJet Experience in the United States has been so positive that we have expedited our plan for a permanent presence in the country,” said Flohr. “Since our US launch in September 2013, we’ve enjoyed a successful partnership with Wheels Up, our sales agent for the region, and together we’ve laid a solid foundation which was a key requirement to this next step. The VistaJet U.S. Sales team will continue to collaborate closely with Wheels Up.”