Company Offers Fractional Ownership of Private Jets

A new company - Aurora Jet Partners - is promising all the benefits of jet ownership, but at a fraction of the cost.

The new jet sales, management and charter company was created by a partnership between Ledcor's Opus Aviation of Vancouver and Morning-star Partners of Edmonton. Ledcor is investing in Morningstar Partners to create Aurora, which will manage more than $100 million in partners' aviation assets.

"Aurora bridges the gap between ownership and charter," says Aurora co-owner Don Wheaton.

"It is designed for the busy traveller who desires the guaranteed consistent service that full ownership provides but doesn't fly enough hours to commit to having their own jet."

Customers can own anywhere from one-eighth of an aircraft (equivalent to 100 occupied hours of flying per year) to full ownership, Aurora said in a news release.

A one-eighth share starts at about $800,000.

Partners can trade their time to match a particular trip's distance or number of passengers on any one of Aurora's fleet of nine aircraft, which range from the four-seat Embraer Phenom 100 to the 12-passenger Bombardier Challenger 605.

Four of the aircraft will be updated, including the first Canadian Embraer Phenom 300, which will be purchased this August, and a Bombardier Global 5000, which will be added next year.

"Every aspect of ownership, from maintenance to administration, and foremost - safe operation of the jets - is managed by Aurora's team of experienced professionals," said Darryl Saunders, vice-president, Aurora Jet Partners.

"When you need to travel, you simply tell us where and when you want to go."

As little as four hours notice will be required to book a flight, Wheaton said.

"When you show up at the airport your jet and crew are standing by to have you and your guests heading comfortably to your destination within minutes," Wheaton said.

Aurora Jet Partners is co-owned by Ledcor, Wheaton and Kim Ward. Wheaton and Ward are co-owners of the Morningstar aviation group, which also operates the FedEx Express jet transport courier contract in Canada.

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