MEBAA Convention News

Al Maktoum FBO is in Jetex’s growth plans

 - December 12, 2012, 1:55 PM
Jetex Flight Support president and CEO, Adel Mardini, hopes to open an FBO here at Dubai World Central by the end of next year. He also plans to open three more FBOs in 2013 – two in Europe and one in the Far East.

Jetex Flight Support, which provides business aircraft handling services around the world and operates two FBOs in Europe, is planning an aggressive growth strategy that could see its FBO holdings triple over the next year. As the Dubai-based company celebrates its seventh anniversary, having launched at the 2005 Dubai Airshow, it revealed that four more FBOs were in the pipeline–including one here at Dubai World Central (DWC) to be built next year.

Jetex has already been growing fast. After providing only handling services in its first three years, the company jumped into the FBO business by acquiring the former Flying Group facility at Paris Le Bourget Airport (in February 2009). Last November, the company established a joint venture with Westair to operate an FBO at Shannon Airport in Ireland. Both facilities are prime locations for business aircraft handling in Europe, with the Paris FBO logging more than 9,000 annual movements in the past year alone, Jetex president and CEO Adel Mardini told AIN here at MEBA 2012.

But apparently that was just the beginning. According to Mardini, next year Jetex (Stand 400) plans to open FBOs at DWC’s Al Maktoum International Airport, as well as two new locations in Europe and one in the Far East (Mardini would not elaborate further on the exact locations).

Regarding the facility here at DWC, Mardini said Jetex had signed a memorandum of understanding and is in final negotiations for a long-term lease on a facility in the “aviation district,” a 339,700-square-mile plot of land on the southwest corner of the airfield that will house various business jet FBOs, hangars and MROs, as well as the new Dubai Airshow facility (currently under construction) where future MEBA conventions will also be held. The new Emirates Flight Academy will also be located in this district. Jetex hopes to open its FBO at Al Maktoum Airport by the end of next year, Mardini said.

Meanwhile, Jetex is also laying plans to expand in the Americas. In October, it started supplying fuel to international operators in domestic airports in Brazil, and next year Jetex plans to do the same in Mexico and Columbia.

The company also exhibited in the U.S. at the recently held NBAA Convention in Orlando, Florida, hoping to make further inroads into the largest business aviation market in the world. “Jetex is making steps to be closer to the U.S. market,” Mardini told AIN. “U.S. aircraft operators need assistance for international trip planning, and we are the natural choice for this in the Middle East, since we are very familiar with the rules and culture in this region.”

Closer to home, the company is expanding its footprint in Africa, having opened an office in June at Ethiopia’s Addis Ababa Airport, which Jetex calls “a gateway to Africa.” It also offers full aircraft fueling (including arranging for cash payment of fuel in local currencies), ground handling and flight planning services throughout this emerging continent.