A Texas law firm saves money by flying to Silicon Valley in a private jet rather than paying for office space

You would too, if you could. Picture: Getty Images

A Texas law firm says it’s cheaper to buy a $US3 million private jet and fly 240,000km a year to San Francisco and Houston than it is to open a fulltime office in Silicon Valley.

The Houston Chronicle reports intellectual property firm Patterson and Sheridan bought the nine-seat Gulfstream jet – known as “the bus” – in 2010.

They estimate it costs around $US1900 per passenger for a round-trip flight to Silicon Valley, which it does on a monthly basis to meet clients and find new ones.

The benefits are:

  • The 3-4 hour flight is 100% billable
  • It cuts about 36 working hours of checking in and boarding processes, at $US250 an hour
  • Young lawyers can live in Houston where real estate is cheaper, and;
  • Labour hire costs in Houston are 52% lower than in Silicon Valley

And the firm still gets to pitch for high-end clients. Patterson and Sheridan told the Houston Chronicle it had gained several major clients, including financial software maker Intuit, Western Digital and Cavendish Kinetics, a maker of radio frequency devices.

Above all, its lawyers get to enjoy a monthly dose of “eye-of-maple paneling, plush leather seats and a well-stocked bar”.

“In some cases clients pay a little less,” said senior partner Bruce Patterson. “But we make more doing it.”

The Chronicle took a trip with the firm. You can read more about it here.

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