EBACE Convention News

EBACE 2011: UK operator showcases charter services

 - May 17, 2011, 6:15 AM

UK operator PremiAir is at EBACE (Stand 843) showcasing its private jet and executive helicopter management and charter services. The company also provides maintenance for both fixed-wing and rotary aircraft and operates a Hawker Beechcraft service center at Oxford Airport.

PremiAir currently operates three Learjet 45s and a Premier I; it will be adding a Hawker 750 in the coming months. In addition, it has plans to add large-cabin jets such as the Challenger and Global to its fleet. The relatively new charter operation has been growing steadily and “we’re now well ahead of our 2011 plan,” said group managing director David McRobert.

The UK company also manages and operates the heliport at Battersea, the only licensed commercial heliport in London. Last year, the site was upgraded and now includes a five-start hotel.

Looking ahead to the 2012 London Olympics, PremiAir expects the heliport–and its executive helicopter fleet–to be in high demand. In fact, said McRobert, “Our Sikorsky S-76 fleet is already booked heavily for ‘exclusive use’ clients during the period of the Olympics, and many of the big fleet jet operators are now booking helicopter transfers into the London heliport at popular times, recognizing that availability may soon be an issue.”

According to McRobert, 2011 has brought improving levels of business right across the group. In addition to growing charter demand, the PremiAir Global aircraft sales business also is picking up after several very slow years.

PremiAir is looking to further strengthen the maintenance side of its business and will soon have FAA approval for its London Biggin Hill base. It has just recruited Mike Preston as its new director of engineering. He will oversee plans to add new aircraft types to its Part 145 certificate and eventually to win further manufacturer service center approvals. The company also wants to grow its Part 21 services, coverage tasks such as avionics upgrades and the installation of in-flight entertainment systems.