Wheels Up

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Rick Nini and his Corporate Eagle company have taken off.

Over the past year, the provider of membership-based aviation programs has conducted more than 1,500 flights to 27 countries, with nearly 8,000 passengers.

“Since 2010, we went from 35 to 54 staff members, including 29 pilots,” says Nini, president and CEO of Corporate Eagle, whose 39 clients own a share of different aircraft at Oakland County International Airport in Waterford Township. “Going forward, our business plan projects we will grow to 66 staff members and 36 pilots (over the next few years), and we plan to add.”

The company recently acquired four new Falcon 2000 aircraft, which each hold up to 10 passengers. The jets include LED cabin lighting, LCD wide-screen cabin monitors, a DVD player, a soundproofing package, Wi-Fi, and a phone system. Other aircraft in the 12-plane fleet include an eight-seat Hawker 800XP and a nine-seat King Air B-200.

“Business aviation has come back strong from the (2008) recession, and our clients see it as a great way to attract and retain senior management because, frankly, it’s a better use of their time,” Nini says. “We offer a worldwide phone system along with Wi-Fi, so you can call and text (during flights).”

In the coming months, the company will explore adding another regional facility of between 14,000 to 18,000 square feet. “We offer safety, security, privacy, and productivity,” Nini says. “That’s a great value proposition.” db

 

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