“The African continent has great potential to become a business aviation hub, which led to us opening our facility in Lagos in October 2012,” said Ettore Poggi, ExecuJet Africa’s managing director. “Traditionally, Africa has mainly been a turboprop market, popular with mining companies and the tourist industry.
While the business aviation world cautiously waits to see if the signs of recovery in the traditional markets of Europe and North America bear fruit, the original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) are looking elsewhere to satisfy demand for growth. While the Far East and Latin America offer encouragement, it is Africa that offers the best opportunities for increased sales, but the continent also has its own unique set of challenges.
Dubai-based aircraft sales and aircraft management specialist and operator of the region’s largest fleet of business jets,Empire Aviation Group, which has been a subsidiary of Air Works India Engineering since 2012, is looking to expand support to the booming Southeast Asia market. A strategic tie-up is to be announced in the first quarter of 2014, Paras Dhamecha, executive director at Empire Aviation, told AIN.
Dassault Aviation launched its long-awaited, all-new Falcon 5X at last month’s NBAA show in Las Vegas. The long-range, advanced technology model should provoke strong interest among the growing Middle Eastern jet set.
Abu Dhabi’s Royal Jet, the commercial luxury private-jet operator, is to issue an RFP for the replacement of six Boeing Business Jet (BBJ) aircraft within the next two months, as it seeks to expand regional charter operations in the Middle East, Africa and beyond.
According to the latest business jet market update from J.P.Morgan, recent data shows further weakness in the pre-owned business jet market. Used inventory rose to its highest level since late last year, while pricing showed another sequential decline, the firm said. Business jet flying bounced back, however, providing a glimmer of hope.
Hamburg, Germany-based aviation data research firm WingX Advance said there is “little to cheer about” in October’s business aviation activity in Europe, which dropped 2.1 percent year-over-year and posted the fewest number of flight hours in any October since 2006. Charter flying fell 3.5 percent last month year-over-year, with the biggest declines in business jet activity–some 800 business jet charter flights fewer, it said.
Hong Kong-based Asian Sky Group introduced new “signature” charter brokerage services, promising clients red-carpet treatment from beginning to end. This service will include 24-hour client support, five-star catering, flight planning, ground transportation and “other essential services” for customers. Through a portfolio of “highly reputable operators” around the globe, Asian Sky Group plans to offer customers access to midsize through large-cabin business jets “at competitive prices.”
Business Jet Access has added Jerry Tindel Jr. and David Garvey to its maintenance staff. Tindel assumes the position of maintenance supervisor and will oversee operations at the BJA Dallas Love Field maintenance facility. He began his career in the Air Force and his 30 years in business aviation maintenance include positions as lead technician for Falcon and Gulfstream aircraft. As supply chain manager, Garvey will manage all areas of materials and supply-chain logistics for the company.
The fallout of the Hawker Beechcraft bankruptcy continues to settle as Little Rock (Ark.) Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport prepares to seek a new tenant for the former Wichita OEM’s completion and MRO facilities. The Little Rock facility was shut down by the former Hawker Beechcraft (now Beechcraft) earlier this year as part of a decision to exit the business of building business jets.