CJIQ323 features Wheels Up, Dassault, Airbus and the late Hamish Harding


The latest edition of Corporate Jet Investor Quarterly (CJIQ) features Wheels Up, Dassault and a celebration of the late Hamish Harding, former chair of Action Aviation.

Our feature Wheels on Fire probes the business restructuring of Wheels Up. No aviation business has attracted as much attention as Wheels Up this year. This cover story feature probes how and why the restructuring happened. Plus how the company is preparing for a profit-focused future.

Star players in the feature include: (of course) Kenny Dichter, founder, former CEO and chair. George Mattson, new CEO of Wheels Up and, the man who appointed him to the role, Ed Bastian, CEO, Delta Air Lines among many others.

Here’s a selection of quotes from our cover story feature. This from Dichter after his departure from the company: “I am very enthusiastic about the future of Wheels Up. The entire Wheels Up community has my unwavering support on the journey ahead.”

And here’s Bastion on Dichter’s contribution to the business. “I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to Kenny Dichter for building the Wheels Up brand into a powerhouse in private aviation,” he said after closing the big financing deal. “We have grate appreciation for his steadfast devotion to the members, customers and employees and his role in elevating the private aviation experience, which will undoubtedly guide the industry’s path forward.”  Read the full story here.

When Dassault Aviation’s executive vice president Civil Aviation, Carlos Brana spoke to CJIQ, he stressed the technical qualifications of the manufacturer’s staff. “Most of us are engineers – we are a company of engineers,” he told us. It’s a discipline and an approach to business planning that infuses all of Dassault Aviation, he said.

Brana is responsible for defining and implementing global strategy for Falcon Aircraft sales and customer service. His to-do list includes defining the guidelines for the modernisation of Dassault’s product line. So Brana and the team had something to celebrate last month when the manufacturer confirmed its long-awaited Falcon 6X had finally entered service after the jet won type certification from both EASA and FAA on August 22nd.

During our interview, Brana looked ahead to the commercial launch of the 6X and its next development project – the Falcon 10X, due to enter service at the end of 2025.

Another leading business jet to feature in the current edition of CJIQ was the ACJ TwoTwenty in our popular First Look feature. Launch customer luxury resort company FIVE Hotels is so pleased with its new jet it’s reluctant to release the aircraft to exhibit at events. Chadi Saade, acting president, Airbus Corporate Jets told us: “FIVE Hotels seems delighted with its ACJ TwoTwenty and aircraft schedule is so busy – to the point we can’t get hold of the aircraft  as much as we would like or shows.” But he added: “It’s a nice problem to have.”

Aloki Batra, CEO FIVE Hospitality told us: “A dare-to-be-different jet, the ACJ TwoTwenty cabin is one of the most innovative and technologically-advanced aircraft cabins ever designed. One that boasts all the conveniences of luxury living, but in the sky.”  

No stranger to fast jets was the late Hamish Harding, the late chairman of Action Aviation, who tragically died on June 18th, 2023, when his submersible imploded during a dive to view the wreck of RMS Titanic in the North Atlantic. Our feature recalls happier times, as we documented his many adventures in the air, in space and below the sea.

The first adventure we featured was his world-record breaking circumnavigation of the Earth via the North and South Poles at the controls of a Qatar Executive Gulfstream G650ER together with a specialist team. Last year Harding blasted into space aboard the Blue Origin New Shepard 4 space rocket.

The feature, Jules Verne planted the idea, recalled another record-breaking achievement, his dive aboard the Triton submersible DSV Limiting Factor to the deepest part of the world’s oceans. Accompanied by submarine explorer Victor Vescovo, Harding crossed the Challenger Deep in March 2021. Read the full feature – including his many other accomplishments – via the link.

Meanwhile, you can read the digital version of CJIQ here. And, if you like what you read, why not sign up for the free print version of the magazine?  Also, we are always searching for new stories from the fast-moving world of private jet aviation. So, if you have an idea, please let us know.



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