Labace Shows Resilience of Bizav in Latin America

 - August 27, 2009, 11:06 AM

While the rest of the world continues to struggle in the grip of an economic crisis, the recent Latin American Business Aviation Conference & Exhibition (Labace) suggests that business aviation in Latin America, and Brazil in particular, is healthy and growing. Labace 2009’s record log of 13,342 visitors was 1,212 more than the previous year, not to mention the healthy list of 110 exhibitors. “I’ve been to every Labace show since it began,” WorldFuel Services sales manager Leny Omillion told AIN, “and I can tell you that this is the best first day in the entire six years.” Other exhibitors watched as lines formed, often two dozen deep, to visit aircraft on the static display line. Some exhibitors expressed uncertainty about the three-day show’s scheduling from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily, but by early evening on the first two days crowds were still growing. All of the major business jet manufacturers were represented at the show. Smaller players included Piaggio, there for the first time, with an Avanti II; Cirrus with its seven-seat Vision SF50 jet single; and Socata with its TBM 850. Among more than a dozen helicopters was Eurocopter’s EC 145, the main attraction of Brazilian exhibitor Helibras. Labace 2010 is scheduled for August 12 to 14, again at Brazil’s São Paulo Congonhas Airport.