Chapman Freeborn news

Chapman Freeborn launches global broker initiative for expanding private jet market

International aircraft charter specialists Chapman Freeborn today launched a new service offering immediate worldwide support to smaller business jet brokers and operators undertaking charters in unfamiliar, challenging or financially restrictive regions.

The Global Broker programme will enable firms to call upon Chapman Freeborn’s network of more than 450 staff based in 35 offices across 25 countries.

They will offer worldwide charter expertise and flight support services, including over-flight permits, ground handling and fuelling, to fellow charter brokers, operators, luxury partners, concierges, and family offices.

The company, which celebrated its 40th anniversary this month, is responding to demand from the emerging markets for private jet charter – particularly India, Russia, Brazil, Africa and China by formalising existing ad-hoc arrangements to support partner brokers.

Partnering companies will be able to call on Chapman Freeborn’s global buying power and close relationships with operators and airlines worldwide, as well as its ability to secure good credit terms.

When partners enter into an agreement with Chapman Freeborn they will be contractually protected too, with a non-compete clause.

The initiative will be formally launched at EBACE, Europe’s premier business aviation conference in Geneva (May 21-23). Alex Berry, Chapman Freeborn’s Group Marketing and Sales Director said: “We are bucking the trend in the wider industry by offering support to smaller brokerages to help achieve the high standards business customers expect, rather than looking to undermine and undercut them.”

Chris Moody, owner of Fractional Jet Europe, has enjoyed partnering with Chapman Freeborn these past two years. “Our clients demand the best quality solution possible wherever they fly. It is important too to work with a broker who respects me as a partner and respects my client relationships. The team at Chapman Freeborn deliver all this, and more. Chapman Freeborn respects that my clients’ information is confidential and I can share this with them in confidence.”

There are thousands of charter brokers employed in the market today, and that number is growing continually. An increasing number are single or two-person operations with limited overheads, often with niche expertise, working with limited working capital and a small client base.

Charter brokerage industry is not regulated

“It is important in an industry where there is no regulation, that these small players have somewhere reputable to turn to for advice to help them navigate complex requests when they are out of their comfort zones,” said Alex Berry.

For example, a West Coast, US based broker regularly chartering jets out of Van Nuys to Miami for a US client working with a handful of local operators, is likely to be best in class at his work. However, they will quickly discover a completely different set of challenges tasked with arranging a flight from, say, Malawi to Peru.

“Time and time again we have seen customers suffer a bad experience because their broker simply didn’t have the local knowledge. This is where we can make the difference and add value to the broker and most importantly to the customer,” added Berry.

Alex Berry also highlighted that China likes to charter wide-bodied, long range business jets. It also has a significant interest in touring groups, and will seek charter travel for international organisations who want to move people into and throughout China. It is important to have someone on the ground who speaks the local language, understands the culture and acts as the local interface.

“The role we will play, having been on the ground in China since 2004, is that of ‘go-to local partner’ for businesses moving into the region, in all aspects including finance and contracting. From a regulatory perspective too, China is still heavily regulated and that is a process that needs to be understood.”

Alex Berry is leading this initiative for Chapman Freeborn drawing on 15 years’ dedicated experience in business aviation.

He began in sales for fractional operator NetJets, OEM/operator SkyJet/Bombardier, Jet Card pioneer Marquis Jets, and most recently with owned fleet operator VistaJet. He joined Chapman Freeborn, the world’s leading aircraft charter broker in summer 2010.

Chapman Freeborn was one of the earliest players to arrange private jet charters for corporate travel, starting out in the 1980s when the industry was still in its infancy. Since then, the company has led the charter industry in its expansion into Europe, North and South America, Africa, Asia and Australasia. Passenger charters involving commercial airliners and smaller private jets today account for a significant percentage of Chapman Freeborn’s international business.

Chapman Freeborn fast facts

Chapman Freeborn’s global reach is unrivalled. It has 35 offices in 25 countries worldwide, including locations in Europe, North America, South America, Africa, Asia and Australasia.

It handles over 6,000 aircraft charter contracts per year, passenger and freight

Chapman Freeborn’s charter specialists are available 24/7/365.

* Languages spoken by Chapman Freeborn’s 460-plus staff:

Afrikaans, Arabic, Ateso, Bahasa (Indonesian), Bengali, Bosnian, Bulgarian, Cantonese, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, French, Filipino, German, Georgian, Greek, Hungarian, Hindi, Irish Gaelic, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Luganda, Lugbara, Malay, Malayalam, Nepali, Macedonian, Mandarin, Portuguese, Punjabi, Pashtu, Polish, Russian, Romanian, Spanish, Swahili, Sinhala, Serbian, Sotho, Slovakian, Swedish, Turkish, Tagalog, Ukrainian, Urdu, Uzbek, Zulu.

54 different nationalities in the Chapman Freeborn group

Afghan, Armenian, American, Azerbaijani, Bangladeshi, Belarusian, Belgian, Bosnian, Brazilian, British, Bulgarian, Canadian, Chilean, Chinese, Colombian, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Ecuadorian, Egyptian, Eritrean, French, German, Georgian, Greek, Hungarian, Irish, Indian, Iraqi, Italian, Jordanian, Libyan, Mexican, Macedonian, Nepalese, Pakistani, Philippine, Polish, Portuguese, Puerto Rican, Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Singaporean, Slovakian, South African, Spanish, Sri Lankan, Swedish, Trinidadian, Turkish, Ugandan, Ukrainian, Uzbekistani.

Editors’ Notes

  • Chapman Freeborn was established in the UK in 1973 and the group now comprises of 35 offices in 25 countries around the world.
  • The company specialises in the charter and lease of fixed-wing and rotary-wing aircraft for a wide ranging client base including international organisations, multinational corporations, governments, and a host of industries around the globe.
  • Chapman Freeborn offers specialist passenger services including private jet and helicopter charters for executive travel and large aircraft for crew rotations and international group travel.
  • Chapman Freeborn has over 450 employees worldwide and is currently ranked 32nd in the Sunday Times HSBC Top Track 250 list of Britain’s biggest mid-market private companies.