In a world where timely response to emerging opportunities can be the deciding factor on whether a company wins more business; the corporate jet offers a clear competitive edge. Despite the growth of the Internet and video conferencing, Indian business leaders are finding that they need to be where the action is-face-to-face to be successful. A private jet not only offers the advantage of timely personal response to business and management needs, it offers unequalled security, privacy and productivity en route.
Companies using a Falcon jet to span the globe also have the unique advantage of flying directly to smaller airports closer to their destination saving even more time over airline travel. For those companies having multiple plants in far away places, a private jet saves so much time over the airlines, it is possible to do two days' work in one. A company jet acts as an "onboard office' or boardroom allowing business people to work in privacy and comfort throughout the journey. Being in the air does not mean being out of touch, with the availability of an array of sophisticated onboard communications technology, from satellite phones to video conferencing. As India's economy continues to emerge strongly, the private sector is playing its role in developing business across the country and increasingly beyond, with these companies doing business internationally and globally. Reaching business centres across such a large country and beyond, will increasingly entail the use of private aircraft as essential business tools. Regulation and basic infrastructure such as local airports and fixed-based operators (FBOs) may be lagging behind the demand emerging for business aviation, but there is little doubt that business jets will add impetus to the already thriving Indian economy. Studies in the US and Europe clearly show the positive economic impact of business aviation. In those studies, it was confirmed that business aircraft owners are more successful on a sales per employee basis as well as financial basis. Dassault's share of the Indian market is already strong and growing. Private investment in aviation infrastructure, supported by the Indian authorities, makes the dynamic market even more attractive. Dassault Falcon has more than 60 per cent share of the market for premium, large cabin/long haul aircraft and we are rapidly consolidating this position with an increase in local customer support and parts services. A network of new authorised service centre is also under consideration, in addition to Air Works, Mumbai, which was approved last May. More than 20 Falcon aircraft are currently operating from airports in Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad and Mumbai, and another 10 aircraft are on order for delivery to Indian customers within the next two years. Almost half of the new aircraft orders are for the Dassault flagship Falcon 7X, the first business jet equipped with a fully-digital flight control system.
The performance of the Falcon fleet is especially valued in India, where short airfields, elevated runways and high temperatures are common. The Falcon aircraft are also more economical to operate and more environmentally responsible than any other large cabin aircraft. Their efficient design and technological optimisation means less weight, 20-60 per cent less fuel consumption and lower emissions than competition. Dassault Falcon aircraft are very well suited to the Indian customer, offering long-range-the Falcon 7X can connect Mumbai to Cape Town, Bangalore to the challenging London City Airport in the heart of the city (the only jet in its category to meet the demanding requirements of the airport with its steep approach and noise restrictions)-and performance. We have always been convinced about the potential for growth in business aviation in India. Business jets are now seen in the region as a powerful tool to enable quick and convenient access to customers within the country and worldwide. We believe in the bright future of business aviation in India and are committed to expand further our presence in the country.