Draken International

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Draken International, Inc.
FoundedFlorida, USA, 2012 (2012)
FounderJared Isaacman
HeadquartersLakeland, Florida, USA
Area served
United States
Key people
Jared Isaacman, Chief Executive Officer
Sean Gustafson, Vice President of Client Relations
Jerry Kerby, Vice President of Operations
Dale Snodgrass, Chief Pilot / Deployed Operations
John Baum, Vice President of Training, Tactics and Security
ServicesContract air services to the armed forces, including airborne adversary support, flight training, threat simulation, electronic warfare support, aerial refueling, research and testing
Draken International team at Lakeland, Florida headquarters.
Aero L-159E aircraft operated by Draken International
Atlas Cheetah

Draken International, Inc. is an American provider of tactical fighter aircraft for contract air services including military and defense industry customers. The firm is based at the Lakeland Linder International Airport in Lakeland, Florida and also has an operating base at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada. Draken offers airborne adversary support (Red Air), Joint Terminal Attack Controller (JTAC), Close Air Support (CAS), flight training, threat simulation, electronic warfare support, aerial refueling, research, and testing services to the U.S. Department of Defense, U.S. defense contractors and aerospace firms,[1] provided by a fleet of former military aircraft. The company CEO is Jared Isaacman.[1]


In March 2018, the company announced a $6.7 million expansion of its headquarters and repair infrastructure at Lakeland Linder International Airport.[1]

On June 1, 2018, the Pentagon announced that the Air Force had awarded Draken a $280 million contract to continue providing training services for the 57th Adversary Tactics Group at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada, as well as Luke Air Force Base in Arizona and Hill Air Force Base in Utah.[2]

In November 2018, the Air National Guard (ANG) awarded Draken a five-year contract to provide red air services to support key combat readiness training exercises throughout the United States.[3]

Draken provides Joint Terminal Attack Controller (JTAC) training and Close Air Support (CAS) for the United States Marine Corps (USMC) at MCAS Cherry Point and MCAS Yuma and United States Navy's (USN) Naval Aviation Warfighting Development Center (NAWDC) at NAS Fallon.[citation needed]


An A-4 Skyhawk and a Mig-21 on display in front of company headquarters.

With 109 jets, the company operates the largest fleet of privately owned former military tactical jet aircraft in the world.[citation needed] The company's fleet includes:[4]


The company's pilots are a combination of US Air Force, US Navy and US Marine Corps tactical jet pilots who are retired from those services or who continue to serve part-time in the reserve components of those services, including the Air National Guard. Their backgrounds include USAF Weapons School Graduates and Instructors, USN Fighter Weapons School (TOPGUN) Graduates and Instructors, USAF Aggressor Pilots, USN/USMC Adversary Pilots, USAF Air Liaison Officers, former USAF Thunderbirds demonstration pilots and USAF/USN/USMC Forward Air Controller - Airborne (FAC-A) Instructors, with some of the more senior pilots having previously served as commanders (USAF) and commanding officers (USN/USMC) of operational squadrons, groups and wings while on active duty.[12]

Activities outside the U.S.[edit]

Draken International and Secapem, a French manufacturer of towed aerial gunnery banner, have created together SDTS,[13] with a number A-4 Skyhawk lent by Draken International to provide Red Air missions to French Navy and French Air Force Rafales.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Draken International Profile July 2013 Florida Trend
  2. ^ "Contracts for June 1, 2018". U.S. DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE. Retrieved 2018-09-11.
  3. ^ "173rd Fighter Wing expands training with contract adversary air". 173rd Fighter Wing. Retrieved 2018-09-11.
  4. ^ a b Tegler, Jan (July 22, 2013). "Draken International Commercial Air Services". Defence Media Network. Retrieved 2014-01-14.
  5. ^ "Aircraft Inventory - Draken International". drakenintl.com. Archived from the original on 14 August 2015. Retrieved 25 May 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  6. ^ "Draken International acquires ex Kiwi Skyhawks". australianaviation.com.au. Retrieved 25 May 2015.
  7. ^ 30 MiG-21 according to official website [retrieved on 24-10-2017]
  8. ^ Aermacchi MB-339 Acquisition Press Release Archived February 21, 2013, at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ Draken Fleet Press Release
  10. ^ "Government sells L-159 subsonics". Ministry of Defence & Armed forces of the Czech Republic. 5 January 2014. Retrieved 2014-01-14.
  11. ^ "DRAKEN ADDS 22 SUPERSONIC RADAR EQUIPPED MIRAGE F1M TO THE FLEET". drakenintl.com. Retrieved 12 Nov 2017.
  12. ^ "Capt. Dale Snodgrass USN (Ret.), Chief Pilot / Deployed Operations | Draken International". Drakenintl.com. Archived from the original on 2013-06-29. Retrieved 2013-05-31. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  13. ^ "SDTS". SECAPEM.

External links[edit]