There is good news and bad news when it comes to financing for pre-owned business aircraft. The good news is that financing is available for aircraft buyers; the bad news is that banks are primarily lending only to those with exceptionally good credit who are buying an aircraft that is less than 20, and even in some cases less than 10, years old, according to a panel of aircraft financiers at the recent NBAA Aircraft Registration, Finance and Legal Conference in St. Petersburg, Fla.
As the U.S. expressed “concern” on Tuesday over the devaluation of China’s currency, making its exports cheaper but reducing the buying power of Chinese consumers, Chinese airlines continued to feel the pain of a weaker yuan as the value of their foreign debt rose with the relative strengthening of the U.S. dollar. China Southern Airlines, for one, on Tuesday issued a profit warning report estimating a first-quarter net loss resulting from negative foreign exchange fluctuations.
“There has been an enormous amount of energy and enthusiasm here in Shanghai at ABACE, despite the change in weather from sunny skies on the opening day to rain yesterday,” National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) president and CEO Ed Bolen told AIN as he summed up the show so far.
Two years ago, explained Kurt Edwards, director general of the International Business Aviation Council (IBAC), the idea was floated that the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), which has the mission of improving economic growth in Pacific Rim countries, could also “improve the way that the economies facilitate the movement of business aviation within the region, because business aviation contributes to economic growth.”
Marwan Khalek, group CEO of London-based Gama Aviation Ltd. (Booth P501), sees China as the next growth opportunity for his global charter and management company.
Business aircraft manufacturers are seeing Indonesia as the emerging country for business aviation in Asia. They believe that sales, albeit still relatively slow, are poised to grow, mainly due to favorable economic and geographic conditions.
The World Economic Forum, held annually in Davos, Switzerland, traditionally attracts a large number of business aircraft, and this year was no exception, with hundreds of government and business leaders heading to the area. Jet Aviation Zurich this year handled 726 movements and nearly 2,000 passengers during the course of the conference (January 22 to 25), while tallying fuel sales of more than 1.1 million liters (290,000 gallons). The FBO noted larger aircraft carrying more passengers this year.
Product liability insurance isn’t your everyday policy. “Without experience in aviation law, regulations and coverages, generalist insurers don’t understand the risks,” explained Jaime Benthusen, product liability director for NationAir Aviation Insurance (Booth No. 5105). Benthusen was on hand at Heli-Expo 2014 to introduce the company’s product liability coverage and risk assessments for rotor-wing aftermarket parts firms.
Air ambulance outfitter Spectrum Aeromed (Booth No. 3628) will be distributing approximately $100,000 in profit sharing funds to 21 employees at its Fargo, N.D. headquarters, based on its continuing trend of revenue increase, the company announced. “We’ve experienced exponential growth for three consecutive years and we’re fortunate to have the opportunity to reward our team of dedicated employees with profit sharing as a result of their hard work,” noted company owner Dean Atchison.
Aviation fuel supplier Epic and U.S. Bank Multi Service Aviation introduced a new Epic/Multi Service Aviation co-branded aviation services card today at the Schedulers & Dispatchers Conference in New Orleans. According to the companies, the new card will be accepted globally via the Multi Service Aviation network starting in the first quarter.