European Bizjet Fleet on the Decline in Austere Climate

 - May 10, 2012, 1:57 PM

Over the past year some 50 European business jets–roughly 2 percent of the continent’s bizjet population–have been sold to other parts of the world, where fleets have grown by 3 percent, according to business aviation consultant Brian Foley. The majority–79 percent–of these aircraft have found new homes in North America, mostly in the U.S. and Canada. Meanwhile, the rest have gone to Africa (7 percent), Australia (5 percent), South America (5 percent) and Asia (4 percent).

“Today’s for-sale statistics do not bode well for a prompt recovery” in the region, Foley noted. Almost one European business jet in five (19 percent) is up for sale, he said, which is more than one-third higher than the worldwide average of 14 percent. These business jets exiting the European market “are a representative mix of everything in the fleet, from older aircraft to the newest, most fuel-efficient models,” he said.

Foley believes that the world’s pre-owned jet buyers have been shopping in Europe, where the high supply keeps prices down. Another factor is Europe’s falling euro, which favors outside buyers. “Europe may be the last bastion of great pre-owned airplane deals,” he said, “as owners must sell in this austere climate.”