The definition of a seller’s paradise is when demand far outstrips supply—which is exactly what’s happening in the world of business jets.
The number of used personal or business jets for sale dropped by 38 percent between June 2020 and June 2021, going from 1,839 to 1,184, according to research by Colibri, an aircraft broker that specializes in private jets. That means roughly 4.65 percent of the all private aircraft are currently up for sale, the lowest percentage since the industry started keeping stats in the early 1980s.
At the same time, delivery of new jets declined this year to 602 units from 794 in 2020. “The industry is poised to fully recover, and possibly expand beyond historical usage, as international and corporate travel resume throughout 2021 and into 2022,” according to a recent forecast by Global Jets.
Sensing a way to supplement that shortfall, Bombardier recently announced a new certified pre-owned aircraft program. These programs may be common in the auto world, but they’re a rarity in business aviation. Several have come and gone in the last 10 years. But Bombardier’s seems to be the most ambitious and far-reaching, including all three of its brands—Learjet, Challenger and Global.
“It is capitalizing on a resilient market where supply still hasn’t caught up with demand,” said Jean-Christophe Gallagher, executive vice president for strategy at Bombardier, based in Montréal, Canada.
The company is already the largest reseller of its jet brands, and with the new program, it will select preowned jets coming to market and update them with the latest safety features, operational upgrades and cabin enhancements. The interior is refurbished and sanitized, while the exterior gets a fresh coat of paint that can be enhanced by a custom livery of the owner’s choice.
The program includes a one-year warranty with operational support during the first year. Buyers also get access to Bombardier’s global customer services support network, as well as recommended maintenance inspections, service bulletins, system upgrades and enrollment in Bombardier’s parts program.
Chris Milligan, Bombardier’s vice president of pre-owned aircraft services, says the program also provides “the new aircraft delivery experience customers are looking for.”