DayJet Parks VLJ Fleet For ‘Economic Reasons’
The fate of per-seat, on-demand air-taxi firm DayJet is up in the air, and its aircraft are not. According to an FAA spokesman, the Boca Raton, Fla.-based company “parked” its entire Eclipse 500 fleet at noon today for “economic reasons.” However, flight-tracking provider FlightAware shows that the DayJet fleet has been moved over the past 18 hours to Gainesville (Fla.) Airport, where 16 of the company’s 28 Eclipse 500s were parked in early May following the revelation that DayJet was unable to secure another $40 million of operating capital to proceed with its aggressive expansion plans. Instead, DayJet was forced to scale back operations at the time and lay off about 100 employees. By press time, AIN was unable to determine if today’s actions mean that DayJet has been shut down for good, or how many employees remain at the company. DayJet’s latest troubles come almost exactly a year after it started very light jet air-taxi service in Florida and then gradually expanded service to cover much of the Southeast. Just last week DayJet said it was expanding the service to allow weekend operations. Several phone numbers for DayJet officials have been disconnected, though AIN was able to contact vice president of strategic operations Traver Gruen-Kennedy via his cellphone. However, he declined to comment on the current situation at DayJet. The company’s public relations department did not return AIN’s calls seeking comment. Eclipse Aviation also couldn’t be reached for comment on the status of DayJet’s remaining orders for approximately 1,400 Eclipse 500s.