Starbucks Picks Up New Corporate Jet
We are coming off a bad year for companies and their private jets so it's a bit startling to see Starbucks, a company which has closed hundreds of locations and cut thousands of jobs, take delivery of a new jet. The Seattle Times reports that Starbucks bought a $45 million Gulfstream 550 to add to their corporate fleet. The company ordered the jet three years ago in less austere times. A spokeswoman said that the company decided it would be too expensive to cancel the order. In order to cancel the contract, it would have cost around $5 million plus the forfeit of payments already made. This new plane brings the Starbucks fleet up to three including a seven-year-old Gulfstream V that it is trying to sell. According to Bob Zuskin, a consultant at Jet Perspectives, that plane could have brought in $45 million six months ago but would now be more likely to fetch a price in the $32-34 million range. The new jet spent its first two weeks under Starbucks ownership in Hawaii on a trip that was, according to Starbucks spokeswoman Deb Trevino, a "combined personal and business trip."
Starbucks is far from alone in keeping a private plane or two, as we saw recently even the embattled financial firms are holding onto their fleets.