Monday, February 02, 2009

Starbucks Ditches Its New Gulfstream G550

[Above: The cabin of a G550]

The business aviation industry keeps insisting -- without conceding the egregious recent tone-deaf, bone-headed mistakes by the Big Three auto-makers and by Citigroup -- that the media and politicians are stigmatizing corporate jets. More on that fundamental PR goofup later, but here's another example of a company that has ditched the jet, in this case Starbucks' new Gulfstream G550.

Here's the Aero-News Network report. And yes, companies that can make a legitimate case for using a corporate jet -- and there are many -- are bailing out because of the backlash from the public and from shareholders feeling the pressure.

(By the way, I'll bet that Starbucks itself -- with its far-flung locations in so many areas where commercial air service ranges from crummy to nonexistent -- is an example of a company that can justify the business use of a private jet in terms of productivity.}

Meanwhile there's a glut of recent-model corporate jets on the used-aircraft market, and it's growing. This morning, someone was advertising a 2010 delivery position for a new G550 -- at $44 million. I think there's some room to bargain.


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