The Middle East presents plenty of opportunity for business aviation growth, and at last month’s Abu Dhabi Air Expo businesses reported that their investment in the region–and beyond–is paying dividends.
Craig Fuller, president and CEO of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA), will step down from his position as soon as a successor is identified. The association also promoted Sean Collins from manager of the pilot information center to eastern regional manager.
Airports Council International-North America (ACI-NA) president Gregory Principato intends to step down from leadership of the association at the end of June.
Satcom Direct held its 9th annual conference in early February, bringing together not only its own customers but also a variety of hardware manufacturers and other companies that benefit from and provide services via satcom. The conference grows every year and is evidence that the steady pace of satellite communications development has led to a greater variety of airborne telecom services–and even some reductions in pricing–for aircraft operators.
Last week, the FAA issued a two-year renewal for Exemption 7897, more commonly known as “NBAA’s small aircraft exemption,” which permits NBAA members operating small aircraft “to take advantage of flexibility usually available only to operators of larger, turbine-powered airplanes,” the association said.
Bedford, Mass.-based Jet Advisors is offering a new tool, dubbed the Private Jet Index, to support the aircraft-selection process by ranking and statistically scoring more than 30 parameters. Company president Kevin O’Leary said the patent-pending index also considers the needs and wants of each individual buyer and then weighs the aircraft scores accordingly.
Evergreen Apple Nigeria (EAN) has been selected by Sharjah, UAE-based aviation business services firm Avjet Routing as its preferred ground handler in Nigeria, with principal services being provided at Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos. The agreement, which was ratified last month, means that all private and business aviation traffic from Avjet Routing passing through Lagos will be handled exclusively by Evergreen Apple Nigeria.
With one quarter of the year in the rear-view mirror, the pre-owned market enters one of its historically busier quarters, and with some key economic indicators showing improvement, this year may be setting up to be busier than many recent ones. So many aircraft values have done nothing but fall for nearly five years. Now some are showing signs of resisting that perennial trend. A number of segments continue to edge ever closer toward right pricing, but others have fallen so far that they are beginning to move quickly.
Cirrus Aircraft remains committed to the single-engine Vision SF50 jet program, and with suspension of the Diamond D-Jet is now the front-runner in the race to bring a single-engine jet to market. Cirrus has hired more than 100 engineers, designers and technicians for the Vision team and is recruiting additional personnel, according to the company. Most recently, Cirrus promoted former executive v-p and COO Pat Waddick to president and COO.
The success enjoyed by outside players in providing capacity to Africa has meant regional and domestic business has assumed ever-increasing importance not just for Africa’s indigenous airlines but for the continent’s economic growth as well. The tremendous distances between population centers and the lack of convenient and reliable roads also make Africa a bumper opportunity for suppliers of regional jets with seating capacities of around 100.
A final decision could come this month on a contested development plan at California’s Norman Mineta San Jose International Airport. While Signature Flight Support’s bid to build an $82 million FBO facility received an official endorsement from the airport’s evaluating staff in February, Atlantic Aviation–currently the lone service provider at the airport–appealed that recommendation. The City Council is set to consider the award on or after April 9.