Air BP has added airport operator Voa São Paulo’s five airports to the Brazilian locations at which it supplies fuel. In addition, Voa São Paulo has become a participant in the business aviation carbon-offset program Air BP launched last year in Brazil with Avantto as its launch customer.
Ricardo Paganini, general manager for Air BP South America, told AIN that initially, the company is implementing the program for Voa São Paulo at the operator’s Rolim Adolfo Amaro–Jundiaí Airport and Campo dos Amarais airports, “but there is potential to expand to other [Voa São Paulo] locations in the future.” Voa São Paulo also operates Arthur Siqueira–Bragança Paulista State Airport, Itanhaém's Antônio Ribeiro Nogueira Jr. Airport, and Ubatuba Airport.
Paganini reported that in the 12 months since launching Air BP’s bizav carbon-offset program in Brazil in June 2018 to the end of May 2019, Avantto—the country’s dominant fractional-ownership fixed-wing and helicopter operator—offset more than 1,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions using the program. This was the equivalent of the carbon-capture capacity of 73,000 trees or the carbon emissions generated by 1,588 one-way flights between São Paulo and Angra dos Reis, a popular beach resort in western Rio de Janeiro province, he said. (The route is an important one for various Brazilian bizav charter companies.) Avantto has subsequently renewed its agreement with Air BP for another year, according to Paganini.
Air BP’s carbon-offset program in Brazil is run by parent BP’s global Target Neutral plan, which selects projects on the basis of their contribution to reducing carbon emissions and their potential for supporting the UN’s sustainable development goals, according to Paganini. Each project is selected for its suitability for improving livelihoods in the local community, or for providing other educational, economic, and social benefits. Recently BP selected Kamiranga—a ceramics factory located in the municipality of São Miguel do Guamá in northern Brazil which produces bricks exclusively using renewable fuels—to add to its Target Neutral project portfolio, he said.
Under its program to provide pilot lounges at various Brazilian airports for its business aviation customers, Air BP will open a new lounge at Jundiaí airport this year, Paganini said. Air BP is also introducing in Brazil its Airfield Automation digital platform, a cloud-based technology it launched in May 2018.
Touted by Air BP as the world’s first commercially deployed system providing an engineering barrier that actively prevents misfueling, the Airfield Automation platform consolidates the data generated by airport fueling operations and works via an app on a handheld device in each fueling vehicle. The ‘safe2go’ app captures fuel volume readings and provides fuel-grade checks to add an extra barrier against misfueling. It then electronically captures customer details, which are confirmed by an electronic signature from the pilot or airline.
Paganini said Air BP’s share of the aviation fueling market in Brazil continues to grow, and in addition to its partnership with Voa São Paulo it has signed a number of other contracts recently that will ensure its presence in the Brazilian market continues to expand. “This demonstrates that Air BP has the right strategy for the region,” he said. Air BP is now looking at the possibility of growing both in the bulk fuel market in Brazil and also by providing fuel at small, privatized airports throughout the country, according to Paganini.
Elsewhere in South America, Air BP is primarily targeting business aviation customers as its best potential avenue for market growth in Chile and Peru, according to Paganini. Air BP has been present in the Chilean market since 2001 but entered the Peruvian market in December 2016 via a joint venture with local partner PBF. In Chile, “our sales are growing in both general aviation and commercial aviation,” he said. In Peru, “we have established a sustainable growth plan and the results are in line with this plan.” The program relies partly on Air BP “being able to tap into the Air BP global network, which brings more international customers into the country.”
The company also is active in Uruguay and in Argentina. In the latter nation, South America’s second-largest country and economy, Air BP has established a presence at Ezeiza International Airport and Aeroparque Jorge Newbery, Buenos Aires’ two major commercial airports, and at Taravella International Airport serving Córdoba. Those are Argentina’s three busiest commercial airports.