Dassault Falcon Service begins ops at F’borough

 - March 22, 2007, 9:54 AM

Dassault Falcon Service (DFS) on April 1 officially began operations from Farnborough Airport, the main European business airport rival to Paris Le Bourget, which serves as DFS’s headquarters. DFS president Christian Sasso told AIN that his company has taken an office at Farnborough and that DFS already has a Falcon 900EX registered in the UK.

“The unit at Farnborough was in fact established in 2003, at which time we followed UK procedures for an aircraft operators’ certificate, which was delivered this year. So the Farnborough operation really came into effect only at the beginning of last month, the date from which we are authorized to operate aircraft registered in the UK,” he said. Sasso confirmed that DFS is considering whether to register other aircraft in the UK so it can base them at Farnborough. “As far as I know, Dassault Falcon Service is the only Le Bourget-based company to operate from the United Kingdom,” he said.

At the moment, DFS doesn’t plan to establish another operation outside Le Bourget and Farnborough. But other sites, including in Eastern Europe, could be considered “depending on opportunity,” Sasso said.

The Le Bourget-based business aviation company operates a fleet of seven Falcons, but Sasso said the frequent use of new Dassault demonstration airplanes for clients for a limited time means DFS “has the equivalent of eight aircraft permanently in the fleet.” The present fleet includes four Falcon 50s, a 2000, a 900EX and a 900B. It manages five of the seven airplanes for owners. Sasso said the fleet composition remains steady and that there are “no major plans to increase it.”

DFS meanwhile awaits completion of construction work on a new three-story building on a site near its present FBO and administrative offices at Le Bourget. Construction began this March after several months’ delay in obtaining building permission. The building, which will house all the general administrative offices, meeting rooms and a restaurant for its employees, is expected to be completed within 12 months.

DFS also plans to refurbish its Le Bourget headquarters to become a dedicated FBO.