ExecuJet, part of the Luxaviation Group, is aiming to open its new FBO-MRO facility at Dubai South’s Al Maktoum International Airport (DWC) in 2020, as the migration from Dubai International Airport (DXB), where ExecuJet and Jet Aviation are the only remaining major business-jet services providers, continues.
ExecuJet (Booth 598) is exhibiting for the seventh time at MEBAA and announced plans to relocate its entire FBO and MRO operation to a single facility at DWC at last year’s Dubai Airshow. “The new facility’s design has been agreed and will be going out to tender in early 2019 with an estimated date for completion set for early 2020,” according to Luxaviation.
“The Middle Eastern business aviation market has been slow for the past two years," said Mike Berry, vice president, aviation services, and vice president Middle East, Luxaviation Group. "However, we are expecting to see improvements in 2019, especially in the latter half of the year, as issues with aircraft grounded during the Saudi anti-corruption cleanout and the Qatari political embargo should get ironed out and resolved.
“As a result of the widespread economic upturn," he added, "we are also expecting to see boosts in tourist traffic across the region over the coming months. This is an area that used to attract a lot of activity, from Russia, in particular, but has dipped significantly in recent years. We are looking forward to handling more tourist and business aviation activity as we slowly get back up to pre-recession figures.”
ExecuJet’s Middle East MRO team was augmented by the graduation of nine engineers from its internship program in November. The graduates worked alongside multinational mentors at ExecuJet to gain experience on the aircraft of a number of OEMs.
“The industry-wide shortage of qualified aviation professionals has had a real impact on the availability of top engineers for aircraft maintenance," said ExecuJet training manager John Crook. "The only way to tackle this is to invest heavily in skills development. ExecuJet Middle East is dedicated to providing the next generation of highly skilled engineers, and thanks to the ongoing success of our internship program, we are already seeing our MRO capabilities expand significantly."
ExecuJet also announced that its FBO at Lagos, Nigeria was awarded International Standard for Business Aircraft Handlers stage 1 accreditation, the 11th ExecuJet facility in the world to be so recognized.
“We are very happy to be the latest FBO facility in the ExecuJet network to receive this prestigious accolade," said Victor Mgbachi, FBO Manager, Lagos. "Our team is committed to exhibiting the very highest standards in safety management and customer service and we look forward to continuing to welcome more clients through our doors and onto our aircraft, ensuring their experience with us is nothing but exceptional.”
Luxaviation Group consists of Luxaviation Helicopters, Starspeed, and a number of business aviation entities including ExecuJet, which together operate more than 260 jets and helicopters. The company offers aircraft management, charter, MRO, and FBO services. The combined group operates 15 AOCs, 27 FBOs, and 15 MRO centers across Africa, Asia-Pacific, the Caribbean, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East.