Bombardier inks record $7.8 billion jet dealNovember 27, 2012: 11:47 AM ET
Fear not wealthy jet setters, spread your wings and fly away. Alas, everyone else, you are flying coach.
In a bit of good news for the 1%, corporate jet company VistaJet signed a deal Tuesday with Canadian jet manufacturer Bombardier Inc. (BDRBF) that could be worth $7.8 billion if all 142 jets are delivered.
The multi-billion dollar agreement is the single largest in the history of business aviation, according to VistaJet, which ordered 56 Bombardier Global aircraft and secured options to buy another 86 jets.
"By any standard, this is a historic order for Bombardier," said Steve Ridolfi, president of Bombardier's business aircraft division, in a statement.
Tuesday's deal tops one made earlier this year by NetJets, the private jet company owned by Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A).
In June, NetJets announced plans to buy as many as 425 jets from Bombardier and Cessna-maker Textron (TXT). That order included 100 Bombardier Challenger jets, worth about $2.6 billion, and options to buy another 175 aircraft.
For privately-held VistaJet, the order is "the most significant milestone," said Thomas Flohr, founder and chairman of the Switzerland-based company.
This year, VistaJet provided "understated and bespoke service" for 25,000 passengers on 10,000 single international flights, according to Flohr. It offers "on demand" service for clients within 24 hours notice, complete with "cabin hostess." Clients can also purchase a plane through VistaJet, which will provide maintenance and storage.
VistaJet does not disclose its hourly rates, but Flohr has dropped hints. Using a comparison private jet users can relate to, Flohr has said the cost of a flight from London to Moscow is equivalent to purchasing four Hermes handbags, which range between $1,900 and $7,000 a piece.
The order is part of VistaJet's effort to maintain a fleet of aircraft that are less than two years old and expand flights to emerging markets.
The new Bombardier jets will directly service "growth markets" in Russia, China, the Middle East and Africa. VistaJet has doubled its sales force in these markets and has signed "landmark" agreements with partners in China and Russia.