European private jet market sees a 42% drop in the number of pre-owned aircraft for sale

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Analysis (1) from Colibri Aircraft, the private jet broker which specialises in the marketing, resale and purchase of pre-owned private aircraft, reveals there are only around 142 pre-owned private jets for sale in Europe at the moment, which is 42% lower than in December 2019 (there were 243 pre-owned private jets for sale then), and 31% lower than December 2020 (there were 207 pre-owned private jets for sale then).

The analysis reveals Germany, the Isle of Man, Austria and France have seen the biggest fall in the actual number of pre-owned jets for sale. In December 2019, they had 36, 33,19 and 16 aircraft for sale respectively, but the corresponding figures for September 2021 are 20, 20, seven and four respectively.

Malta, Estonia and Ireland all saw an increase in the number of pre-owned private jets for sale.

Country (top 10 by number of pre-owned jets for sale in December 2019) Number of pre-owned private jets for sale in December 2019  Number of pre-owned private jets for sale in December 2020  Number of pre-owned private jets for sale in September 2021 
Germany 36 26 20
Isle of Man 33 32 20
UK 22 21 12
Austria 19 13 7
France 16 10 4
Malta 14 16 17
Luxembourg 12 12 6
Denmark 11 8 5
Czech Republic 8 6 3
Spain 7 10 6
European total 243 207 142

 

Colibri Aircraft says the decline in the number of pre-owned jets is a global issue, and it is not just affecting the European market.  It says there are a number of factors behind this:

  • This global decline has been led by the USA, which kept state borders open and was less affected by international border closures. Key factors driving the dramatic drop in the supply of private jets for sale was a strong desire to travel in an environment with a far lower risk of Covid transmission – there are as many as 680 fewer person-to-person interactions when flying by private jet compared to commercial (2), and a significantly reduced airline service making airlines less convenient, which meant that more owners of private jets wanted to keep hold of their aircraft and a large number of first-time buyers entered the market.
  • Surging asset prices in stock markets and real estate, historically cheap debt due to government stimulus, and depreciation benefits that applied to private jet purchases removed many of the financial pressures some owners might have been under to sell their aircraft in more normal circumstances and also encouraged new buyers to act.
  • As inventory has declined so rapidly, current owners are often holding onto their current aircraft as they struggle to find a suitable replacement in such a supply-constrained environment, further decreasing the aircraft that are coming available for sale.
  • The number of new private jets being delivered has fallen – it was down by around 20% when compared to 2019 (the lowest number since 2004)

Oliver Stone, Managing Director, Colibri Aircraft said:We have been operating for over 10 years now, and this is probably the most difficult environment we have encountered by buying private jets – particularly for European compliant aircraft.

We are having to rely on or extensive contacts and expertise to source reliable aircraft for clients who want to buy, and on the flip side we are ensuring that those clients who want to sell their aircraft are securing the best possible price.”

  1. Colibri Aircraft analysis of AMSTAT data
  2. GlobeAir