London Stansted Airport is set to get a fourth FBO, with The Diamond Hangar scheduled to open in time for the start of the 2012 Olympic Games on July 27. The main shareholder in the new venture, which is trading on the Aero Toy Store brand, is Ben Shirazi, son of the U.S. aircraft sales and completions group’s founder, Morris Shirazi.
Fixed base operator
How could sending your dirty plates to the fixed base operation (FBO) after a flight to have them washed in a dishwasher be lethal? All too easily, according to catering safety expert Paula Kraft, principal of Atlanta, Georgia-based Aviation Catering Consultants. If the ground handler services the lavatory, then takes his gloves off and brings your clean crockery back to the aircraft, he may, for example, unwittingly contaminate the fresh dishes with invisible fecal particles. Kraft spoke at EBACE on Wednesday May 16 on how to avoid such catastrophes.
Abu Dhabi’s Al Bateen Executive Airport (Stand 1943) is fast gaining traction as the Middle East’s first and only dedicated business aviation gateway. The former military air base has been reinvented as a business aviation service hub, along the lines airports such as the London-area Farnborough and Biggin Hill, and Le Bourget in Paris.
Argus released a new version of TraqPak FBO, a web-based live flight-tracking aircraft activity analysis and market intelligence reporting tool used by FBOs, air charter operators, aircraft management companies and other aviation service providers. New features of TraqPak FBO v2 include the capability to add unique color codes to any aircraft and change the activity views in the program between full map, no map and the standard map and grid side-by-side view.
After several down years, the private aviation industry looked to 2011 as the start of a rebound cycle, and for many aviation service providers the year did show some gains after a relatively flat 2010. “We loved 2011 a whole lot more than we did 2010,” was how the head of one major FBO chain summed up the past year’s business.
The National Air Transportation Association (NATA) is calling on its members to oppose legislation submitted last week by South Carolina state Sen. Phil Leventis (D) that would block the imposition of FBO ramp fees on pilots who use a facility but do not purchase any services.
With Super Bowl XLVI a little over two weeks away, Indianapolis-area FBOs are preparing for the arrival of approximately 1,500 business and general aviation aircraft. “We’re already at more than 60 parking reservations for the game,” Million Air Indianapolis regional director Drent Sarault told AIN.
Landmark Aviation made its Bay Area debut last month at Oakland International Airport. The new site occupies Hangar 5 and half of hangar 3 on the airport’s North Field, which was formerly part of Kaiser Air’s FBO until its lease on those facilities expired.
Abu Dhabi Airports Company (ADAC) has finished the crew accommodations at its DhabiJet FBO at Al Bateen Executive Airport. Taking up the entire bottom floor of the facility, the crew offerings include briefing and flight-planning areas, crew lounge with satellite tv, a snooze room, meeting room, showers and a prayer room.
The FBO offers on-site immigration and customs and enough parking space to accommodate more than 100 aircraft. Al Bateen is the Middle East’s first dedicated business aviation airport.
For the FBO industry, just how good a year 2012 will be depends solely upon how much flight activity there is in the corporate and private aviation sectors. After all, parked aircraft do not use fuel nor require the services of FBO staff.
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