Naples Jet Center in Florida was born out of the partnership of two Rust Belt FBO owners, according to Bruce Byerly, who describes himself as “a third-generation aviation-family member.” After he received a degree in economics in 1992 from Vanderbilt University, he returned to work at the family FBO, Byerly Aviation on Greater Peoria Regional Airport in Illinois.
The recent slowdown in business aviation traffic growth across Europe has not deterred London’s Biggin Hill Airport (Booth No. 953) from pushing ahead with development plans. According to business development manager Robert Walters, traffic dropped by as much as 25 percent in the fourth quarter of last year but since then has been recovering somewhat.
The Jacksonville (Fla.) Aviation Authority is building a 21,000-sq-ft hangar and hoping a maintenance company will lease the facility. This is the airport’s first new hangar since the authority took over the airport from the U.S. Navy in 1999. Another 13,000-sq-ft hangar is available next to the new hangar and offers office and shop space.
Chromalloy, a supplier of components, PMA parts and specialized component repairs for turbine engines, is investing $16.5 million in an expansion of its Tampa engine component production facility to offer additional casting capabilities. According to Chromalloy president Armand Lauzon, Florida and Hillsborough County approved performance-based tax incentives totaling $585,000 for payment over a period of six years.
ABS Aviation Management Services has taken over management of Sebring Flight Center at Sebring Regional Airport in Florida, which recently joined the Avfuel dealer network. ABS is now responsible for customer relations, training, safety, fuel quality control, ordering and pricing. One of ABS’s first moves was to make sure all arriving aircraft are met and greeted, part of a revision of the FBO’s customer service philosophy.
This year, Banyan Air Services is celebrating 30 years of service at Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport in South Florida. Founded by Don Campion in 1979, Banyan started in a 4,000-sq-ft hangar as a small piston-aircraft maintenance shop for local charter operators.
Future technicians can now take advantage of a combined FAA Airframe and Powerplant mechanic and associate degree program offered by St. Petersburg College in Clearwater, Fla., and National Aviation Academy.
Vero Beach, Fla.-based Piper Aircraft confirmed that it laid off 150 employees, company CEO Jim Bass told Indian River County commissioners at a general meeting yesterday. Further, Bass said Piper could cut more personnel “if it gets worse,” adding that the manufacturer could reduce its production output by up to 40 percent this year due to the slowdown in sales of general aviation aircraft.
Rectrix Aerodrome Centers has opened a second FBO, at Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport in Florida, which joins the company’s first FBO in Hyannis, Mass. Rectrix Sarasota is housed in a 15,000-sq-ft three-story glass tower next to 150,000 sq ft of hangar space and 15 acres of concrete ramps.
Ocean Sky is seeking to capitalize on significant investments it has made to ensure that its FBO at Scotland’s Glasgow Prestwick International Airport meets stringent new European security requirements.