Embraer Sees Bizjet Growth Returning in 2012
“Only in 2012 will [business jet] deliveries start growing again,” Embraer executive vice president Luis Carlos Affonso said Tuesday in a pre-LABACE press briefing. He recognized 2010 and 2011 as “difficult years” for the business aviation industry, but noted that there are already signs of an upturn and said the company will meet Phenom delivery goals if it can only make them fast enough. The Phenom 100 is Embraer’s first dedicated business jet, and the “natural challenges of the start of production” could impede the ambitious goal of manufacturing 110 of the light jets in its first full year of production this year. If the company can deliver 55 to 60 Phenoms by the end of the third quarter, then Affonso believes this year’s goal can be met. The Phenom 300 is on schedule for certification and deliveries by year-end. Affonso sees year-to-year U.S. charter numbers finally making an uptick after dropping 35 percent, while the less affected European charter market shows stabilization. Additionally, net ownership of fractional jet shares is up, he said. Meanwhile, Affonso said the drop in inventory of younger used jets, which compete with new aircraft sales, is even more accentuated than that in the pre-owned market as a whole.