Own your own Pilatus PC-24 with Jetfly
Cedric Lescop, Co-Director Jetfly, took delivery of the company’s first PC-24 super versatile jet in September. Three more aircraft are scheduled to join the fleet.
Cedric Lescop and Maxime Bouchard, Directors of the fractional ownership operator Jetfly were presented the keys of the first PC-24 to be delivered in Europe, with serial number 111, during a handover ceremony on 17th September 2018. The Luxembourg-based company was founded in 1999, opting for Pilatus aircraft from the start. Today, it employs a workforce of 160.
Each customer owns a share in an aircraft, entitling them to charter an aircraft for private or business use whenever they wish. Jetfly operates 22 PC-12s, the largest fleet in Europe.
As the European launch customer of the PC-24 how will this new aircraft fit into the fleet?
The new Pilatus Jet PC-24 will propose an additional option to our PC-12 owners loyal customers while giving them the opportunity to fly with a faster and less restrictive aircraft fleet; available for flights longer than 3 hours to southern Spain, Morocco, Greece and Turkey. This new aircraft will also allow us to gain a new clientele accustomed to fly on twinjet aircraft giving them access to a wider choice of airfields. Thanks to its incomparable performance, the Pilatus PC-24 can, for example, land with 8 passengers on the Saint Tropez La Mole Airport under commercial flight regime.
As the largest European PC-12 operator what are your relationships with Pilatus?
We are a valuable part of the Pilatus family. Our relationship with them is built upon mutual respect and trust established over the past 15 years. We greatly admire the quality of their products and share the same values of discretion, efficiency and excellent service.
In terms of fractional ownership how do you credit the success of Jetfly?
The long-term success of Jetfly is based on the aircraft quality and high service standards we provide. Our key performance indicator is the smile on our client’s face. It comes at no surprise that our owners are our best sales persons and regularly recommend us to their close relatives and network of friends and business partners, allowing us to extend our customer database. Our satisfaction rate is close to 100%, and 75% of our clients trust us and do not hesitate to renew their contracts after the 10 years lease.
What is your client base and how do they use the aircraft?
Our clients mostly use their aircraft for business and leisure. I believe that around 15% of our owners use our services exclusively for private trips and another15% only for business travels.
How important is the Philippe Stark signature for livery and cabin interior?
Our fractional business approach requires that we use a homogeneous fleet. The aircraft must remain flexible. Philippe Starck’s strength is to input life and dynamism in an item while stimulating desire. Fifteen years ago he chose the right colours and material for our PC-12. Today, our aircraft are still fashionable and remain well recognizable and discreet. On that basis, we have commissioned Philippe Starck to design our new Pilatus PC-24 lines. The yellow citrus colour has been added to bring freshness and a sophisticated touch.
Now that you have flown the PC-24 what are your impressions, as a pilot/passenger? How does this aircraft rank?
The Pilatus PC-24 is a market killer. Its sales program will be without a doubt a great commercial success for the future. The PC-24 is a perfect balance between speed, cabin volume and ground performances. This aircraft has a little wide body and with its flat floor surface will leave all light and mid-sized jets way behind while it can operate landing with maximum weight on short distance as 750 metres. The very last and not the least good surprise is impressive inflight quietness of the cabin.
Jetfly is Apache Aviation’s launch customer for upset prevention and recovery training (UPRT), how does that fit into your business plan?
Flight security is our priority and we are liaising closely with Apache Aviation to organize live flight training on military aircraft for our pilots in order for them to be able to take appropriate action should incidents raise.
How would you react to a pilot/qualified maintenance personnel shortage, as it seems to be one of the major questions looming on the horizon of business aviation?
Pilot shortage is airlines’ biggest challenge for the next 10 years. Our key issues reside in our capacity of offering our crew a good working life. Salary does not do it all. To provide a good visibility on flight forecast planning and an enriched flight panel on new and reliable aircraft is our great asset. Proposing career prospective and monitoring our training tools is very important. Our staff turnover is low compared to other business aviation companies but we do need to remain vigilant.
Jetfly currently manages several Citations CJ3, would you consider managing aircraft from other manufacturers if a customer asked for the service?
We have built a fleet of three Cessna Citation CJ3s, mainly to train our PC-12 crew on twin turbo engine two years prior to our first PC-24 delivery. This small fleet of CJ3s will continue flying with us until 2021 in order to launch our PC-24 department in an efficient manner.
As CEO and co-director of Jetfly, how do you spend your spare time, if any?
I am lucky to manage this company with my business partner Maxime Bouchard. For 10 years we have worked closely and taken decisions together. We can rely on each other. Business aviation is part of the service industry where our clients do appreciate talking to us. We also work a lot on weekends! We can never really take a break! My only restful moments are when I am travelling with my family or flying “Marguerite”, a 1947 Beechcraft 50 Twin Bonanza which I favour as it is able to land on small and unusual airfields just like a Pilatus would do!