Though largely overshadowed by a heavy military presence, the business aviation sector made its voice heard at last month’s Aero India show in Bangalore (February 6 to 10). Serious obstacles continue to stand in the way of those trying to fulfill bizav’s undoubted potential in this vast emerging market (see box), but this has not deterred the major manufacturers from increasing their presence in India.
If I had to sum up the benefits of business jets in just one word, I might pick “convenience.” According to Wikipedia, “convenient procedures, products and services are those intended to increase ease in accessibility, save resources (such as time, effort and energy) and decrease frustration.”
ExecuJet Europe is relocating most of its accounting and information technology departments from the group’s Zurich, Switzerland headquarters to its new global operations center at Cambridge Airport in the UK. Last year, the business aviation services group transferred its aircraft operations department to Cambridge.
The latest move of ExecuJet personnel to the UK coincides with the appointment of Gerrit Basson as managing director of ExecuJet Europe. He is replacing Cedric Migeon, who is staying in Switzerland to start his own aviation consultancy business.
The emergence from bankruptcy of Hawker Beechcraft last week not only marked the beginning of the new Beechcraft Corp., but also signaled the end of the Hawker business jet line. Choosing to focus instead on its turboprop products, government contracts and aircraft service, the Wichita-based manufacturer has shut down all jet production and sold its remaining inventory of new and in-production Hawker 4000s and Premier IAs.
The wide-cabin Gulfstream G650 recently established four city-pair speed records in five days, the Savannah, Ga.-based aircraft manufacturer announced yesterday. “The G650, which entered service just over two months ago, is redefining what business jet operators can expect from their aircraft,” said company president Larry Flynn.
The G650’s most recent city-pair record came on January 28 on a flight from Moscow Vnukovo Airport to Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport. It flew the 4,774-nm route in 9 hours 33 minutes, with an average speed of 574 mph.
Bombardier Business Aircraft saw a “remarkable level” of order intake last year, logging net orders for 343 aircraft versus 191 in 2011, the Canadian aircraft manufacturer reported today.
Gulfstream Aerospace said the two fleet-leading G150s, which are both owned and operated by a U.S.-based multinational energy company, recently combined to surpass 10,000 flight hours. This achievement was accomplished without incident and took only five years, Gulfstream noted. The midsize business jet entered service in August 2006, and some 100 G150s are flying with operators in the U.S., Canada, Central America, South America, Europe and Asia. The entire fleet has accumulated more than 130,000 flight hours and more than 90,000 landings.
Basel, Switzerland-based Amac Aerospace has been granted maintenance organization approval by the State Civil Aviation Administration of Russia. This approval allows Amac to perform base and line maintenance work on all Russian-owned business aircraft, including bizliners. It also allows Amac to undertake heavy maintenance work up to C-checks at its facility at EuroAirport Basel-Mulhouse-Freiburg. Since receiving the approval, Amac has worked on several Russian-owned jets, including the Gulfstream G450 and G550, Airbus ACJ319 and Boeing BBJ.
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.