Richard Santulli, who resigned as CEO of NetJets in August 2009, has returned to the aviation industry with the launch of Milestone Aviation Group. Mr. Santulli secured initial funding of $500 million of equity capital and will serve as Chairman of Milestone. The company plans to focus exclusively on helicopter and private jet markets. Read this article for more information.
More details are emerging regarding the management transition at NetJets earlier this year when David Sokol was named Chairman and CEO after Richard Santulli’s unexpected resignation. Last month, Mr. Sokol granted an interview with The Columbus Dispatch regarding his turnaround plans for NetJets and predicted at least break even results for 2010. In a New York Times article published today, some interesting details are provided regarding the management transition, Mr. Sokol’s cost cutting plans, and his overall management style. A few brief excerpts appear in this article.
In 1989, Warren Buffett spent $6.7 million to purchase a corporate jet for Berkshire Hathaway that he named The Indefensible, perhaps being somewhat embarrassed by an expense that nearly any company the size of Berkshire had long justified as essential for doing business productively. In 1995, Buffett purchased his first share of a NetJets aircraft and in 1998, he purchased the entire company. Read this article for more information and a CNBC interview of Richard Santulli, NetJets’ founder and CEO.