|Parent company||General Dynamics|
Jet Aviation, a wholly owned subsidiary of General Dynamics (NYSE: GD), was founded in Switzerland in 1967 and is one of the leading business aviation services companies in the world. Close to 5,600 employees cater to client needs from 26 airport facilities throughout Europe, the Middle East, Asia and North and South America. The company provides maintenance, completions and refurbishment, engineering, fixed base operations, along with aircraft management, charter services, aircraft sales and personnel services. Jet Aviation's European and U.S. aircraft management and charter divisions jointly operate a fleet of more than 200 aircraft. Its headquarters is in Zurich.
Owned by the Hirschmann family since its foundation in 1967, Jet Aviation changed ownership in October 2005 when the company was purchased by the Permira Funds, one of the leading private equity specialists in Europe.
Nearly four decades ago, Carl W. Hirschmann bought the former Globe Air hangars in Basel, Switzerland to establish Jet Aviation as the first maintenance facility for business aircraft in Europe. Two years later, the Pilatus maintenance and airline handling operations in Zurich and Geneva, Switzerland were acquired.
In the 1970s, the company expanded its services to provide aircraft management and charter services for European and Middle Eastern customers. The first maintenance base outside of Switzerland was established in 1975 in Düsseldorf, Germany, and in 1979, a partnership was formed with a group of Saudi businessmen in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to operate an FBO facility in Jeddah. In 1977, Jet Aviation added outfitting services as a new line of business at its Basel operation and the facility has since then grown to become the largest independent completions center in world.
1980s brought further expansion to the company in Europe and the Middle East, but more importantly, Jet Aviation successfully entered the U.S. market to become the first global player in the business aviation industry. Since the mid '80s, the company bought existing FBOs in Boston/Bedford, Massachusetts, Palm Beach, Florida and added a FBO in Teterboro, New Jersey, in 1988 to serve the strategically important New York City corporate marketplace. The same year, Jet Aviation acquired Teterboro based Executive Air Fleet - the largest aircraft management and charter company in North America.
The consolidation and steady growth in the EMEA region and North America marked the 1990s. Jet Aviation Basel, Switzerland and the three U.S. FBOs in Boston/Bedford, Palm Beach and Teterboro were expanded to enhance the overall quality and services at these facilities. In 1994, Jet Aviation was granted the right to expand its airline handling services in Zurich and Geneva, Switzerland to provide services to scheduled airlines and IATA carriers. A major move into the Asian market was the opening of a maintenance and FBO facility in Singapore in 1995. Two more locations, including a maintenance facility in Hannover, Germany and a full-service FBO operation in 1999 at Love Field in Dallas, Texas, in the United States were added to Jet Aviation's global network.
The new millennium brought a change in ownership for Jet Aviation and further expansion to the company in both, EMEA and North America. To better serve the United Kingdom and especially the London market, Jet Aviation acquired a maintenance, refurbishment and FBO facility at London Biggin Hill Airport. The same year, an aircraft management and charter firm was established in Hong Kong, China. Near San Antonio, Texas, the company opened Jet Aviation Engineering Services to support its own completions facilities in Basel, Switzerland and Palm Beach, Florida and to provide services to third-party modification centers. In April 2005, Jet Aviation's presence in the Middle East was strengthened when the company opened a new maintenance and FBO operation in Dubai, United Arab Emirates which was built in partnership with local partners.
Finally, in October 2005 Jet Aviation was acquired by the Permira Funds, which marked the end of 38 years of family entrepreneurship and in March 2006, the company, under new ownership, announced the acquisition of St. Louis, Missouri-based Midcoast Aviation, one of the leading maintenance, repair and overhaul, modifications and completions companies in North America. After almost 40 years as part of the group, Jet Aviation sold its airline and cargo handling division in Switzerland on November 6, 2007 to Dnata, the largest supplier of air travel services in the Middle East. Since December 2007 Jet Aviation also provides line maintenance, defect rectification and AOG services at Moscow's Vnukovo International Airport. In January 2008, Jet Aviation acquired U.S. based maintenance and completions company Savannah Air Center located at Savannah / Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport. In Spring 2008, Jet Aviation and Beijing-based Deer Air, signed a joint venture to operate a FBO and line maintenance facility at Beijing's Capital International Airport.
November 5, 2008 marked another chapter in Jet Aviation's history when the company was acquired by U.S.-based General Dynamics, headquartered in Falls Church, VA. General Dynamics is a market leader in business aviation; land and expeditionary combat systems, armaments and munitions; shipbuilding and marine systems; and information systems and technologies. As part of General Dynamics, Jet Aviation will operate as an independent business unit within the General Dynamics Aerospace Group to continue with its successful business model.
Daniel G. Clare was appointed as President of the Jet Aviation Group at the company's worldwide headquarters in Zurich, Switzerland in July 2011. His management team and direct reports include the group's CFO, Hartwig Grevener; Stephan Bruhin, Senior VP Group Human Resources; Laurie Phelan, Senior VP and General Counsel; Dave Paddock, Senior VP Group Business Development & Strategic Planning and Heinz R. Aebi, Senior VP Group Marketing & Communications. In addition, all operational senior staff members from EMEA & Asia, including Jürg Reuthinger, Senior VP Aircraft Management; Stephan Krenz, Senior VP Completions EMEA & Asia and General Manager Jet Aviation Basel; Christof Späth, Senior VP MRO & FBO services; Martin Bernegger, Senior VP Aircraft Charter and from the U.S., Gary Dempsey, President of Flight Services for The Americas and Chuck Krugh, General Manager of Jet Aviation St. Louis are also reporting to Dan Clare.
Jet Aviation Business Jets Limited is the Hong Kong branch of Jet Aviation. It is based at Hong Kong International Airport, operating non-scheduled passenger services in the region. The branch operates one Bombardier BD-700 Global Express aircraft and two GulfStream G550 with 15 seats capaicity. The branch was established in 2002.
- Carl Hirschmann - «Dallas» an der Goldküste SI, 8 Dezember 2009 (de)