Having started flying well before he could drive and then becoming one of the UK’s youngest pilots aged only 17, James Moon has aviation in his blood. Despite major life traumas, James has boundless ambition, which has led to him setting up a charity and also founding the aircraft remarketing company Moon Jet Group.
Despite being funnelled towards higher education, James knew what he wanted to do in life and so at the age of 16 he left school to pursue his ambition of becoming a pilot. It was during this private pilot training when disaster struck and he suffered a broken spine playing football; he was told by medical staff that it would be highly unlikely for him to ever fly again. Given that becoming a pilot had been a lifelong dream, James was devastated but he was determined to prove medical staff wrong and go solo again in an aircraft, which of course he duly did.
This life-changing experience reinforced to James that anything is possible and he wanted his love of flying to help disabled, terminally ill and disadvantaged children, which is why he founded the charity ‘Stratus Flying’. Stratus continues to change lives in the UK and overseas whether it is taking people flying or treating malaria and avoidable blindness within developing countries.
However, with his dream of becoming an airline pilot gone, James saw a huge gap in the aircraft sales market for an honest, genuine and trustworthy international aircraft remarketing firm that connected serious buyers with serious sellers. Following 2 years of preparation, Moon Jet Group was launched in 2015 and is now selling second hand aircraft around the globe from its Newcastle HQ, to an array of customers ranging from airlines and private jet companies, to high net worth individuals.
In 2016 the hard work paid off considerably when Moon Jet Group landed a $168m deal to sell two Airbus A330s as part of over 90 aircraft on their books, levelling the enterprise up as ‘the largest aircraft remarketing firm in the world’.
James remains committed to scaling further heights and increasing sales throughout 2017 as well as beginning aircraft charters and an aircraft management service. Further plans include opening even more global offices to provide Moon Jet Group services to a greater breadth of clients and organisations.
As the CEO at only 23 he does meet people who question his ability to grow Moon Jet Group, in typical James fashion he puts this down to experience and says that it helps to shape him and just makes him stronger. He has used business mentoring successfully and was recently described as one of the entrepreneurs to watch in 2017.
His typical week is pretty busy, but always starts on Monday morning with a Group-wide conference call to make sure that the team is updated on all issues and to ensure that they are all pulling in the same direction for the week ahead. James then has a series of conference calls at all times of the day and night as well and high-level meetings with aviation authorities to discuss business growth.
Being a CEO at 23 is exhausting work but James loves every minute of it and wouldn’t change where he is now for the world. His quote for life is ‘Carpe Diem’ (meaning seize the day) and he lives by 2 rules: #1 Never quit #2 Always remember rule # 1…