Avanti Fractional Operator Adds Premier Is

 - April 25, 2007, 9:36 AM

Breaking from its single-airplane fleet of Piaggio Avanti twin turboprops, Fairfield, N.J.-based fractional provider Avantair has added two new Beechcraft Premier I light jets as core airplanes. Avantair CEO Steven Santo told AIN that the jets were added since his company has been unable to add Avantis fast enough as core airplanes. There is a waiting list of share customers and the frax provider is taking virtually as many airplanes as Piaggio can currently produce (about two per month). Further, he said the Premier I is the only available light jet with a cabin that is somewhat comparable to that of the Italian-built turboprop. For now Avantair won’t sell shares in the light jets, though Santo added that this could change depending on customer opinion of the airplane. Avantair has 18 Avantis in its fleet and expects to take delivery of nine more by year-end. Avantair said it will have 185 share owners at month’s end, up sharply from October when the company announced its 100th share customer.