While already known as Asia’s biggest business jet leasing firm, Minsheng Financial Leasing (MSFL) quietly launched its own aircraft operating unit today at ABACE. The company recently purchased Beijing-based charter provider Citic General Aviation, which operated a small fleet consisting of a Dassault Falcon 900DX, 2000 and 7X, and is in the process of rebranding it into a new subsidiary known as Minsheng International Jet.
Zhang Bo, vice president of the company’s aircraft leasing division, said that over the next five years Minsheng will increase its fleet size to 400 aircraft with an investment of roughly $16 billion and is committed to establishing the biggest charter fleet in China. Over the past four years, the company has placed orders for 130 business jets and to date has taken delivery of about half of them.
Chris Bucholz, until this week CEO of aviation-services provider Hongkong Jet, was named aviation president for MSFL. He describes the company as a catalyst for the growth of business aviation in China.
With its expanding inventory of business jets, the company is positioning itself to provide “instant gratification” aircraft leasing for customers in the region who might not want to wait for an ordered aircraft to be delivered. Bucholz also noted that Minsheng’s pool of leased aircraft could also provide reserve capacity for its new charter operation.