CitationAir has stopped selling fractional shares in new aircraft and ceased renewals for current fractional-share customers, the Cessna Aircraft subsidiary confirmed to AIN yesterday. Effective last week, “CitationAir will be streamlining our offerings to deliver those products in our portfolio that have demonstrated the greatest customer demand,” CitationAir president and CEO William Schultz wrote in an email sent to employees. “As a result, we are suspending sales of our Jet Share and Jet Access products and refocusing our efforts on our Jet Card and Jet Management lines of business.”
Jet Share was the company’s traditional fractional share program; Jet Access was a jet membership program. Schultz said CitationAir will continue to honor existing contracts until they expire “and then will buy back the shares in accordance with our customers’ agreements.” Customers who want to stay with CitationAir would then need to transition to a jet card product, he noted.
Analyzing the move, business aviation consultant Brian Foley said, “There are now fewer borders between fractional, aircraft management, jet cards and charter.” CitationAir “simply morphed into what the market wants…a successful branded charter/management model,” he said. Fractional consultant Michael Riegel of Fractional Insider views the move quite differently: “Card ownership cannot survive alone” since it is too “cost prohibitive.” He believes this transition will position Cessna potentially “to shut the business down, and quickly, within a couple of years.”