Silverjet was a British all-business class airline headquartered at London Luton Airport in Luton, Bedfordshire, England, that, prior to the suspension of operations on 30 May 2008, operated services to Newark Liberty International Airport and Dubai International Airport. A proposed rescue package fell through on 13 June when staff were laid off and it was announced that the airline's assets would be sold.
|Hubs||London Luton Airport|
|Parent company||Silverjet Plc.|
|Headquarters||Luton, Bedfordshire, England|
|Key people||Peter Owen (Chairman)|
Lawrence Hunt (CEO)
Silverjet Aviation Limited was created in 2004 by Lawrence Hunt. Prior to launch, the airline secured sufficient funding to begin trading on the AIM, a market operated by the London Stock Exchange, and joined the AIM on 12 May 2006. The airline secured two Boeing 767-200 aircraft in August 2006 that were previously operated by Thomsonfly. These were delivered in March 2007 and October 2007 and were Silverjet's launch aircraft. With the acquisition of British Charter Flyjet in October 2006, Silverjet took ownership of their two Boeing 757 and one Boeing 767 aircraft. This also provided Silverjet with Flyjet's Air Operator's Certificate, Operating Licence and a worldwide Route Licence.
Silverjet's website, designed by Prospect, began taking passengers' bookings for flights on 12 October 2006, for a standard fare of £999. Silverjet's first scheduled flight between London Luton and Newark began on 25 January 2007, and a second daily service on this route was launched on 23 September 2007. Services from London Luton to Dubai International commenced on 18 November 2007, and the airline planned to launch other long-haul destinations in the future, but this expansion was halted because of Silverjet's financial troubles.
At the beginning of May 2008, Silverjet stated that they had arranged an $8.4 million loan facility from Viceroy Holdings, a Middle Eastern investor. However, the airline was unable to draw down $5 million that it needed urgently, and, on 23 May 2008, trading of Silverjet's shares was suspended on the AIM. Later, on 30 May 2008, a statement was released from Silverjet's CEO that stated Silverjet would cease operations and suspend all flights with immediate effect due to failing to secure funding. The last operating flight, SLR254, arrived at London Luton Airport from Dubai at 15:00GMT on the day of the announcement.
On 10 June 2008, it was announced that Ireland-based Kingplace would purchase Silverjet on behalf of unnamed private clients. However that deal fell through on 13 June, Silverjet went into liquidation and made all 420 staff redundant. An announcement by Lawrence Hunt, chief executive of Silverjet on 19 June 2008 dismissed rumours that Arabjet would keep the airline in business and stated that Silverjet's fleet would be permanently grounded and that the airline would not fly again.
Silverjet claimed to be the world's first "carbon neutral" airline. From launch all ticket prices included a mandatory carbon offset contribution to be reinvested in climate-friendly projects. In October 2007, however, their offset scheme was altered to give customers the choice on whether to accept the recommended carbon offset after the United Kingdom doubled the Air Passenger Duty.
In an interview with the Financial Times on 25 January 2007, Lawrence Hunt said: "It’s no use people just sitting around thinking about climate change and pretending it is someone else’s problem. That is what the airline business has done to date."
In January 2007, Silverjet was awarded by The Institute of Transport Management as "Environmentally Aware Airline 2007" in recognition of the stance the company had taken regarding carbon emissions.
|Dubai||United Arab Emirates||DXB||OMDB||Dubai International Airport|
|London||United Kingdom||LTN||EGGW||London Luton Airport [Base]|
|Newark||United States||EWR||KEWR||Newark Liberty International Airport|
Prior to the suspension of operations, Silverjet operated twice-daily flights between London Luton Airport and Newark Liberty International Airport, and a daily service between London Luton Airport and Dubai International Airport. Silverjet also operated cargo services between London and Newark that used the underfloor cargo capacity of their Boeing 767 passenger aircraft.
Silverjet was the only airline to offer a private passenger terminal at London Luton Airport. The airline also had a private check-in area at Newark Airport located in the Arrivals area and separated from the other check-in desks, and used the executive terminal at Dubai International Airport for arrivals and departures. Silverjet's private terminal at Luton and private check-in area at Newark also housed the airline's Silver Lounge, and like most airport lounges, offered food, drinks, seating and free internet access to Silverjet passengers.
- Best Executive Transport - Esquire Man at The Top Awards 2007 
- Best Airline 2007 - Sunday Times Travel Magazine Experts Awards 2007 
- Winner Aviation Category - Condé Nast Traveller Innovation and Design Awards 2007 
- Environmentally Aware Airline 2007 - The Institute of Transport Management 2007 
- "Contact Silverjet." Silverjet. 1 January 2008. Retrieved on 31 August 2009.
- Suspension of Operations
-  Archived 20 June 2008 at the Wayback Machine
- "About Silverjet". Silverjet Website. Archived from the original on 13 November 2007. Retrieved 14 November 2007.
- Finance crisis forces halt to Silverjet shares
- Pagnamenta, Robin (10 June 2008). "Silverjet to return to the skies on rescue deal". Times Online. London. Retrieved 10 June 2008.
- "Carbon offset scheme review - Press Release 2007-10-24 (2)". Silverjet Website. Archived from the original on 13 November 2007. Retrieved 19 November 2007.
- Civil Aviation Authority Aircraft Register
- Silverjet Fleet Age
- "Esquire Award". Silverjet Press Release. Archived from the original on 12 December 2007. Retrieved 14 November 2007.
- "Sunday Times Award". Silverjet Press Release. Archived from the original on 14 November 2007. Retrieved 14 November 2007.
- "Condé Nast Award". Silverjet Press Release. Archived from the original on 31 October 2007. Retrieved 14 November 2007.
- "Environmental Award". Silverjet Press Release. Archived from the original on 31 October 2007. Retrieved 14 November 2007.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Silverjet.|
- Silverjet (Archive)