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LEA Expands Fleet with Legacy 600 and Citation XLS

Aviation - 19th February 2010

London, England, February 19 2010 – London Executive Aviation (‘LEA’), already one of Europe’s largest business jet charter operators, is expanding again with the addition to the fleet of an Embraer Legacy 600 and a Cessna Citation XLS.

The expansion means LEA now operates five Legacy 600s and five mid-size Citations in a total fleet of 24 aircraft.

The latest Legacy 600 (G-HUBY) is based at Farnborough Airport, one of the seven LEA facilities around London.

George Galanopoulos, LEA’s managing director, says: “We will both manage the Legacy 600 for the owner and charter the aircraft, in line with the existing successes of our ‘hybrid’ business model. The owner had not bought an aircraft before but felt the time was financially right to move into the used aircraft market. He expects to need the jet himself for around 200 hours each year. The remainder of the time will be available for charter.

“The Legacy 600 is a very popular aircraft in our fleet – reliable, good range, the best cabin space for the money and a huge luggage hold, far larger than any other jet in its class. We have only missed one trip in four years with our Legacy 600s, so the dispatch rate is excellent.”

The XLS, currently being refurbished, joins four Excel aircraft already operating in LEA’s mid-size Citation fleet.

“Like the Legacy 600,” continues Galanopoulos, “we are both managing and chartering the XLS, which will be based at Luton.

“Refurbishing an aircraft that is only two years old is unusual, but the owners have a clear vision of their desired colours and interior scheme.”

He concludes: “These additions to our fleet demonstrate the value of our hybrid business model. For aircraft owners, charter income offsets operating overheads and covers finance costs. The owners themselves can then enjoy some cheap flying!

“We expect to continue adding aircraft to our managed fleet, particularly in these challenging times. More than ever before, owners are looking at what their aircraft actually cost them. The old days of having an aircraft sitting on the ground, waiting for the owner to fly once a week, are long gone. Owners now realise that an aircraft, like any other asset, needs to work to earn its keep. Adding a business jet to an operator’s fleet makes financial sense and ensures the aircraft is operated safely and professionally.”

Photos of the Embraer Legacy 600 and the LEA management can be found here.