Directional Capital’s investment in Nextant

Alasdair Whyte

[nonmember]Few things in aviation are as risky as attempting to launch a new aircraft and there have been many recent failures.  Kenn Ricci, the founder and CEO of Flight Options and principal of Directional Capital, one of the most successful investors in private aviation, knew this but still wanted to try.::join::[/nonmember][ismember]

Few things in aviation are as risky as attempting to launch a new aircraft and there have been many recent failures.  Kenn Ricci, the founder and CEO of Flight Options and principal of Directional Capital, one of the most successful investors in private aviation, knew this but still wanted to try.

But rather than gambling everything, with Nextant he decided to upgrade – or as Ricci calls it re-manufacturer – an existing aircraft. Their first aircraft is the 400XT.

Five years later the first Nextant 400XTs, which can carry up to eight passengers, were on display at the NBAA Convention. “It is very cool having an aircraft sitting over there,” says Ricci. “I have done a lot of things in aviation but I am very proud of what we have achieved with Nextant.”

It also looks like a good investment. Although the project has cost almost six times more than Ricci expected at the start he is confident that it will pay back and the undisclosed sum is still surprisingly low.

So far, Nextant has sold 40 aircraft to Flight Options and 12 to other customers. It does not need to sell many more to repay the whole investment. Nextant has also learnt a lot from the process so can now get to work on its next aircraft.

Interior of Nextant 400XT

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