For global fuel provider Avfuel, the 2023 NBAA Schedulers and Dispatchers Conference this week in Nashville, Tennessee, marks the start of its year-long golden-anniversary celebration. While today it has more than 3,000 fueling locations worldwide and a network of more than 650 branded FBO dealers, the company began in 1973 as a Midwest regional fuel supplier.
“When we leaped onto the market, no one was doing what we set out to do,” explained Avfuel president and CEO Craig Sincock. “We didn’t know we shouldn’t compete with the major oil companies who were the aviation fuel suppliers at the time. Maybe it wasn’t the best business plan, but it worked.”
Among the innovations Avfuel pioneered was a complete suite of customer-service programs such as pilot loyalty rewards, contract fuel for corporate flight departments, in-house aviation insurance, 24/7 quality assurance and training, in-house OEM for refueler trucks, trip support, marketing support for its dealers, and on-demand tax support.
In recognition of its golden anniversary, the company will roll out a series of special events throughout the year for its employees, as well as promotions for its Avtrip customer loyalty program members.
“To us, 2023 is more than a milestone—our jubilee is a celebration of Avfuel’s growth and evolution over five decades,” said Joel Hirst, the company’s senior v-p of sales. “As we celebrate, we’ll reflect on where Avfuel came from, where it is today, and where it can go from here.” He added that this effort will include determining how the Ann Arbor, Michigan-based company can continue to provide cutting-edge aviation services as the needs of the industry continue to shift.
“In another 50 years, will we be a fuel company?” pondered executive v-p C.R. Sincock. “More likely, we’ll be an energy company providing solutions for electric, SAF, and hydrogen power sources, for instance. Whatever Avfuel will be, it will exist to serve our customers and the industry we love.”