James Butler Describes Today’s Fractional Owner to Aviation International News

Bethesda, Maryland • June 2004

Shaircraft CEO, James Butler, is quoted extensively in a recent article on the evolution and current state of the fractional ownership market. He tells Aviation International News, "Share customers are now more savvy and are buying only the services they need, not what is best for the fractional provider to sell. As fractional owners become more experienced, they’ve found out that the ‘known’ cost structure is really an unknown. In the fine print of the fractional contracts are many cost escalators, including consumer price index multipliers for monthly management fees and occupied hourly charges, provisions to pass along pilot-salary increases and fuel surcharges." Butler also notes that regional fractional programs may be a good alternative for some. However, he warns that to be seriously considered they must have a good track record and capital structure. Butler advises, "Make sure you go beyond the claims they make on their Web site before you buy a share from any regional fractional provider." On the future of very light jets in the fractional market, Butler explains that, "Very light jets are destined for regional fractional providers. These aircraft will bring costs down, which will widen the reach of private air travel..." Overall, it is Butler’s assessment that the fractional industry "is the healthy maturation of the private air industry, and we are now seeing variations of that theme emerge."

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