ABACE Convention News

Broker Chapman Freeborn Is Making Charter Happen In China

 - March 28, 2012, 2:15 AM

Charter broker Chapman Freeborn (Booth H508) is no stranger to China, having established a sales and marketing office in Beijing in 2004. Now the UK-based company has opened an office in Shanghai and here at ABACE is touting the business aviation side of its charter services.

“Without question, a growing part of the market is business aviation and large passenger movements,” said Alex Berry, Chapman Freeborn’s group sales and marketing director. “China has a big appetite not only for touring groups, but also for international organizations wanting to move people into and throughout China,” said Berry. “They need a partner that has people on the ground.”

With 34 offices in 22 countries, Chapman Freeborn believes it is ideally suited to provide that support. “We see ourselves here as the partner for businesses moving into the region,” said Berry. “From a regulatory standpoint, its still heavily regulated, so that’s a system you need to understand.”

In addition to brokering charter aircraft, the company provides support services, including obtaining over-flight permits, ground handling, fueling and passport and immigration services to its business, cargo and NGO (non-government organization) customers, and provides these services on a standalone basis as well. “We can assist [aircraft] owners who want to bring their own airplanes [to China], and operators moving into the region,” Berry said.

For China-based businesses needing charter services, Berry noted Chapman Freeborn can handle transactions in Renminbi. “Chinese companies like to deal in their own currency and like to keep their money in China,” he said.

Chapman Freeborn sources aircraft from commercial and business aircraft operators around the world, and requires aircraft and crews to meet standards above those mandated by FAA, EASA and other regulatory authorities, said Berry.

While the global economic recovery is spurring some of China’s business aviation growth, Berry also credits the country’s “incredibly forward-thinking” policies in deregulating its airspace, which he contrasted with India. Many had believed India would be much more progressive in its policies toward encouraging private aviation than it has proved to be.

The company also has named Dewi Gendo as general manager, greater China and north Asia region.