Flight Options Cuts Staff

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Flight Options, a fractional operator based in Cleveland, Ohio, has laid off about 200 workers across the country, including about 75 pilots, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported on Wednesday. The company blamed high fuel prices and overall economic conditions for a reduction in demand over the last few months, and said in a statement that "we anticipate that prevailing economic conditions will continue." Pilots for the company joined the International Brotherhood of Teamsters two years ago, but no contract is yet in place, the Plain Dealer reported. Some pilots complained that the job cuts were not based on seniority. The company said "productivity" drove the decisions, but some pilots said union activists were targeted. Flight Options operates a fleet of over 130 aircraft, including the Hawker 400XP, Hawker 850XP, Citation X and Embraer Legacy.

The company was founded in 1998, and in 2005, it became a wholly owned subsidiary of Raytheon. In 2007, the company was acquired by H.I.G. Capital LLC, a global private equity firm.