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Flying small: Private jet company grows even in recession

By   /   Monday, July 26th, 2010  /   Comments Off on Flying small: Private jet company grows even in recession

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Santa Barbara may have lost its San Jose flight connection, but a start-up charter jet company is getting off the ground and looking to new heights.

Santa Barbara-based Silver Air, founded by president and owner Jason Middleton in early 2008, focuses on transporting business and private travelers around in light, fuel-efficient jets. “Most charter companies kind of do everything,” Middleton said. “My idea: Focus on a specific market.”

Silver Air has grown from one plane in 2008 to a three-plane fleet now and does an average of 30 to 40 flights a month. The flights held at 50 percent capacity for the first two years but recently started averaging 75 percent capacity, prompting Middleton to expand. The company currently has three pilots, including Middleton, and is adding a fourth.

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