During its year-end investor relations call, Gulfstream’s parent company General Dynamics said that it was in the final stages of negotiating on a $1 billion aircraft deal.
Although it stayed characteristically tight-lipped about any further details, it did say that the deal was with an existing commercial customer and that it would be for multiple aircraft types.
That deal has now entered the company’s order book, with General Dynamics chairwoman and CEO Phebe Novakovic confirming the deal during Gulfstream’s Q1 2019 investor-relations call.
Novakovic was answering a question about the deal from an analyst on the call. Novakovic simply said yes, without expanding on any further details.
Although speculation has been rife since Novakovic originally revealed that Gulfstream was working on the deal, no customer has come forward to confirm the placing of an order.
Several likely customers have been named, with Qatar Executive and Flexjet mentioned the most.
Qatar Executive has already taken delivery of some of its G650ERs and recently started taking delivery of its G500s. It is currently awaiting the delivery of its first G600 which, Gulfstream says, should be certificated before the end of June 2019.
Most money is on Flexjet being behind the order. It has placed large orders with Gulfstream before and has not only accelerated deliveries of its orders based on strong customer demand but has already exercised many of the options that it held.
One reason that the company has not come forward yet could be that it is waiting for a suitable platform to make the announcement.
That platform could be the European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (EBACE), which will take place in Geneva Switzerland next month.