““[Bill Gates] has been historically one of my best supporters…One of my favorite e-mails he ever sent me…I proposed this crazy project. And he sent back this two-line response: ‘This has got to be the craziest thing you’ve ever suggested. Please proceed.’” ”
Piper Enters VLJ Business
The 70-year-old Piper Aircraft has begun a new era, launching the six-seat, single-engine PiperJet, carrying a price tag of approximately $2.19 million. The move adds another entrant into the very light jet market. The PiperJet is a clean-sheet design, which Piper claims will have a range of about 1,300 nautical miles and will cruise at 360 knots, powered by a variant of the Williams FJ44-3A engine. The Vero Beach, Fla. manufacturer expects a prototype to fly within 18 months and deliveries to begin in 2010.