Dean Athans has been named president of the Engine Alliance, succeeding Mary Ellen Jones, who is returning to a senior leadership position at Pratt & Whitney. Athans joins Engine Alliance from the GE Power & Water Aero Derivatives business, where he led the LMS100 power turbine product line since 2010. Before that, Athans spent 25 years at GE Aviation, where he held many technical, operation and commercial leadership roles.
While many prognosticators forecast last year as the beginning of a resurgence for business aircraft manufacturers, those hopes will have to move to this year, according to 2012 aircraft delivery numbers released this morning by the General Aviation Manufacturers Association. While 2012 saw a modest increase in overall turbine aircraft shipments, the gains were solely in the lower-end, non-pressurized turboprop segment as overall billings decreased by nearly 1 percent from $19 billion to $18.9 billion year-over-year.
Aircraft manufacturers will deliver an estimated 9,400 business jets worth $253 billion over the next 10 years, according to a forecast released late last week by Montreal-based business aviation services firm Zenith Jet.
Newly formatted data from online charter portal Avinode gives a clearer impression of the fluctuations in charter aircraft demand and pricing.
Charter firms XOJet and Travel Management Co. (TMC) announced a new alliance yesterday to integrate the latter’s fleet into XOJet’s operations. The two companies have a combined fleet of more than 100 jets, though they will remain separate entities.
Elkhart, Ind.-based TMC operates a fleet of 24 Hawker 400XPs and 30 Hawker 800XPs, while XOJet operates Bombardier Challenger 300s, Cessna Citation Xs and Hawker 800XPs. Under terms of the deal, XOJet will sell all seven of its 800XPs to TMC and concentrate on expanding its fleet of super-midsize aircraft.
Italian police arrested the current and former CEOs of AgustaWestland on bribery charges this morning and raided the company’s Milan headquarters. Giuseppe Orsi, who served as the helicopter manufacturer’s CEO until December 2011 and is currently head of its parent company, Finmeccanica, was taken into custody, while current AgustaWestland CEO Bruno Spagnolini was placed under house arrest.
Defense contractors flocked to Bangalore for the Aero India show this week, even as the Indian government confirmed that the years of plenty might be over. Defense minister A.K. Anthony confirmed that his spending would be cut in the fiscal year that starts in April, although not on “operational preparedness.”
India’s Ghodawat Industries placed an order for a Eurocopter EC135 helicopter at the Aero India show in Bangalore this week. The aircraft will be configured for four passengers and is due for delivery in May, when it will replace the customer’s existing EC120 model.
Comments by President Obama’s press secretary that tax depreciation schedules constitute “loopholes” for corporate jets ignited a blitzkrieg of return fire from general aviation on Tuesday. Pete Bunce, chairman and CEO of the General Aviation Manufacturers Association, declared that politics in Washington continues to demonstrate that facts can be conveniently overlooked when one is trying to point fingers and score sound bites.
The pre-owned business aircraft market, in the fourth quarter, was mostly on par with the 20-year average in terms of sales transactions and inventories, according to recent data from business aircraft market research and services firm Amstat.