Doha-based Qatar Airways has taken a minority stake in California-based jet charter company JetSuite.

Qatar joins New York-based JetBlue Airways, which will be increasing its investment, and a number of private investors as stakeholders in both JetSuite and JetSuiteX.

Qatar said the investment will help fuel the growth of JetSuite’s private aviation business, which currently focuses on light and very light jets. The investment extends to JetSuiteX, the sibling company to JetSuite, further accelerating the expansion of its semi-private air service on the US west coast and beyond.

Qatar CEO Akbar Al Baker said both JetSuite and JetSuite X are “complimentary to Qatar Airways’ business and maintain the core values and customer focus of our own business. We believe that JetSuite and JetSuiteX deliver a truly class-leading service to the US market with a huge potential for development.”

This investment further supports Qatar Airways investment strategy, which already includes minority investments in several other international carriers, such as International Airlines Group, LATAM Airlines Group, Hong Kong-based Cathay Pacific and Air Italy.

JetSuiteX fills a niche in underserved short-haul markets and small airports. JetSuiteX operates its fleet of Embraer E135 aircraft from private terminals in California and Nevada.

According to the companies, the Qatar Airways investment will enable faster expansion of this fleet and the ability to reach new destinations, including the potential to bring the semi-private model to additional US regions.

Linda Blachly linda.blachly@informa.com