Global Airlines, a British start-up planning to operate premium intercontinental services from London Gatwick in Spring 2024, has acquired its first A380-800 from lessor Doric Asset Finance.

The start-up said it chose to buy rather than lease the aircraft as it "showcases our commitment to financial security and resilience from day one".

"The purchase of our first aircraft demonstrates that we are well on the way to launching Global. The next step is to overhaul and refit the aircraft to our high specification, providing our customers with the best experience in the sky today," Chief Executive and Founder James Asquith said.

The German lessor confirmed the transaction.

"We are proud to have placed this beautiful modern aircraft with a new airline that will soon take to the skies. We are confident that Global Airlines will acquire more A380 aircraft in the near future," Managing Partner Sibylle Paehler said.

The lessor owns seventeen more A380s, all of them placed with Emirates (EK, Dubai International) (one retired by the airline and parked at Dubai World Central), the ch-aviation fleets ownership module shows.

9H-MIP (msn 6) was initially delivered to Singapore Airlines (SQ, Singapore Changi) in 2008 and subsequently leased by Hi Fly Malta (3L, Malta International) in 2018. The Maltese ACMI/charter specialist retired it in 2020 struggling to find enough business for the type. The aircraft remains parked at Lourdes/Tarbes and registered in Malta but has been repainted into Global's livery.

The start-up said it is planning to acquire another three A380s shortly and aims to outfit them with around 471 passenger seats each, including high-end first-class suites.

Global Airlines said it would outline its network plans later in 2023. The start-up previously floated plans to connect Gatwick with long-haul destinations around the world but now said it would initially focus on the transatlantic market.

Global Airlines has a registered capital of GBP100 pounds (USD123), fully paid by founder Asquith. The start-up is reportedly backed by Asquith's other business venture, Holiday Swap, a privately-held holiday accommodation provider.