The Egyptian actor and martial arts professional Yousef Mansour is expected at MEBA today to sign a contract at the Action Aviation Outdoor Stand 5 for a Project Phoenix CRJ aircraft. The 50-seat Bombardier CRJ200 regional airliner has been extensively converted to a long-range executive jet role. It seats up to 12 passengers in VIP configuration and will be based in Cairo.
Scheduled for delivery in September 2009, the Phoenix CRJ will be used to fly Mansour and his film crews on location and will also be shared with several Middle East colleagues who will use it for private charters around the region. The aircraft will be managed by ExecuJet Middle East, operating it on one of its European AOCs.
An example that business aviation shows really do result in aircraft sales, Mansour selected the Phoenix CRJ after an exhaustive look at alternative aircraft, including such types as the Gulfstream G200, but the model he eventually chose at half the price of a similar-size cabin, offered real value for money. He has always been interested in aviation, at one time owning a Cessna 501, but his pilot was particularly keen on the Swearingen SJ30.
However, at the EBACE show in Europe earlier this year Mansour took another look at the SJ30 but was also drawn to the Phoenix CRJ. And his early interest in the bigger aircraft evolved from there. The chance meeting in Geneva resulted in Mansour becoming the proud owner not only of the first Phoenix CRJ in the Middle East but also a trendsetter in opting for the extended-range version capable of flying 3,200 nm.
Commenting on the deal to be signed today, Mansour said, “Both Project Phoenix and Action Aviation have been extremely responsive, sharing engineering and technical knowledge and providing comprehensive operating costs. Their strong support team, who will tailor the registration, aircraft management and so forth, was another important factor in determining our purchase of the Phoenix CRJ.”