China-based operator Amber Aviation has successfully closed its Series B funding round, that includes additional financing from existing investor Hony Capital and new investors NetJets, the Fung Investment and Macau-based Liu's Group.
Starting in April 2022, NetJets will assist Amber to build up a core fleet of business jets, transferring up to 20 aircraft over the next two years that will be operated under Amber Aviation's AOC.
“This partnership with Amber Aviation offers NetJets a unique opportunity to provide long term service in the Asian market to our owners,” says NetJets chairman and CEO Adam Johnson. “The team at Amber Aviation shares NetJets' commitment to safety and service, and is a truly collaborative partner that we look forward to working with alongside our respected co-investors.” NetJets will also support Amber in the acquisition of additional business jets direct from various manufacturers.
The additional funding will enable Amber Aviation to set up a new jet card, a membership club and a shared lease programme.
“The shared lease programme will be among the first in China,” says Amber Aviation founder and president Chang Qiusheng. “There's a huge gap in the market for charter users that wish to take the next step towards full aircraft ownership, given the financial undertaking required. By bridging the gap with our shared lease, jet card and membership programmes, Amber Aviation will help grow the number of business aviation users in Asia, which will benefit the whole industry.”
The first aircraft will be transferred in April 2022 and the rest will follow by the end of 2023. NetJets will also provide service support, sales assistance, product design and legal support.
“I'd like to thank everybody on both the Amber Aviation and NetJets sides for working so hard to make this happen. I am incredibly proud that NetJets chose Amber to be its partner, as it demonstrates how far Amber Aviation has come in the past four years since being set up,” says Chang. “With NetJets' assistance we can quickly build up the available fleet of aircraft so that we can be ready once international borders fully reopen. We understand that the size of the fleet is very important, so by having aircraft in place ready, we are sure that we can be successful.”
The new aircraft will be based across major cities in China and Asia; Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai, Hangzhou, Shenzhen, Macau, Hong Kong and Singapore. In addition, Amber Aviation's clients will benefit from NetJets' FBO network in the US and Europe. NetJets will also guarantee aircraft availability to Amber Aviation's clients.