Spanish business aviation group Gestair (Stand 450) and the country’s flag carrier Iberia have joined in a 50-50 joint venture to create Corjet Maintenance. Corjet specializes in maintenance of business jets, as well as providing logistics and parts support.
Spain’s business aviation sector has changed substantially over the last few years with the established operators maintaining their businesses and start-up companies making an impact on a fast-growing market. But they have not been spared by the ongoing financial crisis that has seen an annual 30 percent fall in the number of hours flown.
In the not-too-distant past, Spain’s business aviation sector consisted of one major operator, Gestair, and a sprinkling of smaller companies each operating barely a handful of aircraft. In the last two years the picture has changed dramatically, with the established companies maintaining their prominence and new companies making an impact on the scene despite the financial crisis.
Spain traditionally has lagged in Europe’s business aviation market. Although its fleet of around 80 jets and 42 turboprops for corporate or private use is the continent’s fifth biggest, Gruppo Gestair, Europe’s third largest operator, dominates and Spain commands only about 3 percent of the continent’s market.
Gestair makes a fair claim to being Spain’s leading business aviation group, with about 60 percent of the national executive charter market. It also claims to be the third-ranking operator for the whole of Europe in terms of the number of aircraft operated and passengers carried.
Business aviation in Spain is a modest affair, with an estimated 70 executive jets for private use– very few for a country of 40 million people. While most charter companies operate just a handful of aircraft, Gestair, one of the largest operators in Europe, increasingly dominates the business aviation scene in Spain.