For much of its 30-year history, the European Business Aviation Association (EBAA) has had to work with a small staff consisting of just a handful of full-time employees. Indeed, the size of its payroll has been extremely modest compared with that of its U.S. counterpart, the National Business Aviation Association. But the significant additional income brought in from the successful annual European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition is allowing EBAA to bolster its human resources judiciously.
The EBAA staff is currently led by CEO Brian Humphries, who reports to a board of governors chaired by Dr. Rodolfo Baviera (from Italian operator Eurofly Service) and composed of 18 persons who are elected by the annual general meeting (AGM) of members. In fact, Humphries is due to step down as CEO later this year to be replaced by someone who will hold the job on a full-time basis. Officially, he has been working part-time, although in practice he has been effectively serving on a full-time basis. Once a replacement CEO is found, Humphries will assume the part-time advisory roll of EBAA president.
Historically, there has been something of a cultural balance among EBAA’s leadership between Europe’s “Latin” countries (for example, France, Italy, Spain and Portugal) and “Anglo-Saxon” countries such as the UK, Germany and Scandinavia. It is therefore no surprise that with a chairman who is French (François Chavatte) or Italian (Baviera), you find a CEO who is British (Humphries), with a chairman who is British (Humphries’ former role), and a French-speaking Belgian (Fernand François) former chief executive.
Among the EBAA’s board members are representatives of national associations, some of whom are veterans of business aviation in Europe, including: David Antrobus (British Business & General Aviation Association); Serge Chevillard (EBAA France), who is also manager of Pays d’Ancenis Airport and head of the French Business Aviation Airports Association; Bernd Gans from the German Business Aviation Association (GBAA); Martin Stähli from EBAA Switzerland; and Pietro Zaccari from the Italian Business Aviation Association (IBAA).
Other European countries and business aviation sectors are represented as well, including air taxi/executive charter operators, insurance companies, fractional ownership, helicopters, FBOs and corporate flight departments.
EBAA now has some 270 members. Its rolls have grown considerably since the launch of EBACE in 2001. Before the creation of this major event, the association’s membership was stagnant at just over 100 members.
The group now has members from beyond the 27-state European Union, as well as from outside Europe itself. Indicative of the growing international reach of EBAA, these countries include China, Latvia, Lebanon, India, Israel, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, Russia, Ukraine and the U.S.
EBAA directly represents its members’ interests in the European regulatory arena, and those members get detailed and practical information on both regional and international issues. Updates on key issues are available through the members-only intelligence reports on the EBAA Web site, which was recently redesigned (www.ebaa.org).
All members also receive the association’s newsletters, policy papers and codes of conduct, as well as copies of the “EBAA Who’s Who,” which includes information about EBAA and its members and is a very useful tool for making business contacts. EBAA members also have preferential access to the annual EBACE convention with a discounted entrance fee.
As of early April, the EBAA membership’s fleet included 646 jets, 26 turboprops and 36 helicopters–a total of 708 aircraft. EBAA’s jet fleet draws on the Bombardier, Dassault, Gulfstream, Hawker Beechcraft and Embraer families and includes several examples of the airliner-class aircraft offered by Airbus and Boeing. There are also several Fairchild Dornier 328JETs, as well as some Russian-built Tupolev 134 and Yakovlev 40 aircraft. The most popular turboprop models among EBAA members are in the twin-engine Hawker Beechcraft King Air family. Helicopters are well represented in the fleet, with 11 Bell 222/412/430s and nine Eurocopter Ecureuil AS 350/AS 355s.
Besides the aircraft already in service, EBAA members have ordered a total of 110 new aircraft, including the most recent introductions such as the Bombardier Challenger 300 and Learjet 60XR, Cessna Citation CJ3s and Mustangs, Dassault Falcon 7Xs and Embraer Phenoms.
EBAA’s new CEO–yet to be selected–will lead the following staff members in advancing the association’s mission of supporting business aviation in Europe.
• Brian Humphries–out-going CEO, will become association president
• Carine Jacobs–general management of the association, including handling finances and membership
• Pedro Vicente Azua–manager European affairs (government and European Commission affairs, security, safety, Single European Sky)
• Gwenaëlle Brugallé–convention and seminars manager (EBACE, regional forums and other events)