Marshall Aerospace has entered the pre-owned aircraft sales sector and is expanding its charter activities as part of a relaunch of its business aviation division. The Cambridge, UK-based group is combining its existing Marshall Business Aviation handling and maintenance subsidiary and Marshall Executive Aviation charter operator with the new sales unit in a bid to create a one-stop bizav services brand called Jetability. This also encompasses its concierge support and limousine services.
The Russian market has continued to be a key factor in the recovery that Czech Republic-based ABS Jets has seen in the business aviation sector over the past 12 months. Russians own several of the 13 aircraft that the company has under management contracts, with their insurance companies and banks eager to have these assets in the hands of operators based in the European Union.
Czech FBO ABS Jets reported 28-percent year-over-year growth in executive aircraft handling operations at Prague Ruzyne Airport during the first quarter. According to ground operations director Jan Kralik, the marked increase in business is vindication of the private company’s substantial investment in a new hangar and handling equipment last year.
Prague-based aircraft charter and management provider ABS Jets recorded its best-ever revenues in 2011, breaking the CZK1 billion ($51 million) barrier for the first time. While this represents an increase of 2 percent over the previous year, gross profits increased by 23 percent compared to 2010, to CZK44 million ($2.25 million).
ABS Jets is here at the ABACE show extolling the virtues of Asian operators using Prague as a “one-stop-shop” for their visits to Europe. “The Chinese market is developing fast and is generally seen as growing to become the key region for future growth, ultimately becoming of massive importance to business jet operators,” said Antonia Tomkova, the company’s commercial director.
ABS Jets is accelerating its development as a comprehensive business aviation services group and is here at the NBAA show (Booth No. C13618) to explain how it can support U.S. operators in central and eastern Europe. On September 27, the Czech-based company opened its second hangar at Prague’s Ruzyně Airport and from January it will be able to provide handling there for other operators. It plans to open a full-service FBO by 2013.
Cessna Aircraft is increasing the number of parts stocked at its European distribution facility in Amsterdam. It shares the facility with Textron sister company Bell. Brad Thress, Cessna senior vice president for customer service, said the company plans to increase part numbers available at the Amsterdam Schiphol facility this year from 3,500 to more than 10,000.
Prague, Czech Republic-based ABS Jets (Stand 775) has announced the creation of a joint venture with Vienna, Austria-based Avcon Jet to open an Embraer line maintenance station at Kiev Borispol airport in Ukraine. The agreement also covers warranty work. Both companies are Embraer sales representatives, and both operate Legacy 600s–five and four, respectively.
Prague-based business aviation group ABS Jets (Stand 775) debuted its new Embraer Legacy 650 aircraft to the Czech and Slovak markets during two open days at Prague’s Ruzyne Airport and MR Stefanik Airport, Bratislava, just before this week’s EBACE show. The two days gave ABS’s clients the opportunity to have a look at an almost complete fleet of Embraer’s executive jets in one place.
Russia, and the former Soviet republics surrounding it, remains a massive land of opportunity for business aviation. At the same time, for Westerners at least, much of this opportunity seems to remain blocked by a web of mystifying and frustrating bureaucracy that can make it practically impossible to operate business aircraft cost-effectively.