Air Charter Service Sees Double-digit Growth

 - May 21, 2013, 4:00 AM
Chris Leach, chairman of Air Charter Service, said that first quarter executive charter numbers have grown 20 percent over the same period last year.

During the first quarter of this year, Air Charter Service saw overall growth of 12 percent, with 20 percent year-over-year growth in its executive jet division. The London-based charter brokerage was founded in 1990 by chairman Chris Leach and now includes 17 offices on five continents. Annual revenue is more than $420 million.

Air Charter Service arranged more than 6,500 charter contracts last year and more than 1,600 in the first quarter of 2013. The company also specializes in commercial and cargo charters and offers a jet card–the Lindbergh card–for business jet customers.

A recent job was arranging charter of a Boeing 747-400 from Nairobi, Kenya, to Maputo, Mozambique, working with the charity Save the Children. The 747 hauled nearly 100 tons of tarpaulins and rope used to build shelters for people left homeless by massive flooding.

“We offered to arrange the flight permissions in advance of the charter being confirmed,” said Justin Lancaster, group cargo director, “as we knew they could take up to 48 hours and we didn’t want a delay once everything else had been agreed. The aircraft positioned into Nairobi less than 15 hours after Save the Children gave the go-ahead. It was early morning when the aircraft landed and trucks carrying the cargo were still arriving at the airport at the time, so we started the pallet build before everything had been delivered.”