A new business aviation services company has entered the market, with its launch on June 30 timed to exploit a rise in demand for private aircraft as Covid-related travel restrictions are gradually lifted across the globe. Three business aviation veterans, each with more than 30 years of experience in the industry, created Vulcan Aviation: Trevor Esling, until recently regional senior vice-president of sales for Gulfstream Aerospace; Roger Whyte, former senior vice-president of worldwide sales and marketing at Cessna Aircraft; and Barry Johnson, chief executive of UK-based aircraft management company Executive Jet Charter.
“Trevor Esling, Barry Johnson, and I have held senior leadership positions in several of the world’s foremost OEMs and flight departments, negotiated some of the industry’s largest deals, and built trusted relationships with many of the world’s most sophisticated aircraft owners and operators. This gives us a formidable array of knowledge, skills, and connections to wield on behalf of clients,” said Whyte.
From its headquarters at Farnborough Airport—the UK’s only dedicated business aviation hub—Vulcan will provide what Esling described as “a bespoke service to select international corporate and private clients at each stage of the aircraft ownership journey, from acquisitions and sales to management, operations, and maintenance.”
He said the demand for preowned aircraft is “very strong at the moment” with the availability of used models less than five years old “in particularly short supply.”
“It’s definitely a seller’s market today, especially in the U.S. where there’s not much used inventory,” said Esling. He attributes this buoyant market to the country’s “favorable economic climate; an attractive bonus depreciation [tax incentive] model, which has made business aircraft more affordable; and a surge in demand for private transport from travelers keen to reduce their exposure to the virus.”
Vulcan anticipates a similar trend outside the U.S. as international borders open and travel restrictions are eased. “Videoconferencing has played an important role [during the Covid pandemic], but there is no substitute for face-to-face contact," Esling said. "The desire to resume in-person meetings is palpable."
In addition to the U.S., Vulcan will focus on potential customers in Europe, the Middle East, and South America. “These are traditionally very strong markets for business aviation and our team has built some great relationships across these regions over the years,” Esling said.
While Vulcan will focus on traditional business aircraft, Esling said the company could eventually broaden its reach to include helicopters and eVTOLs. While the market for the latter is in its infancy, he noted, “We are keeping a close eye on developments as it could prove promising in the long term.”