Revenue at Berkshire Hathaway’s service business, which includes NetJets and FlightSafety International, rose by $507 million, to $4.9 billion, during the first half of the year, while profits climbed by $72 million, to $605 million. NetJets accounted for nearly a third of this revenue increase, thanks to higher flight services revenue attributable to more flight hours, as well as better rates and product mix changes. FlightSafety’s revenue also climbed due to increased simulator training activity.
NBAA president and CEO Ed Bolen praised the leaders of the House General Aviation Caucus on Tuesday for their continued support of “one of America’s greatest industries,” and repeated opposition to proposals that would be harmful to general aviation. “General aviation provides more than 1.2 million jobs–good manufacturing and service jobs–and also supports tens of thousands of American businesses,” he explained to a capacity crowd in a Capitol Hill hearing room.
NBAA and more than 150 other associations and coalitions sent a letter last week to the U.S. Senate urging swift passage of a bill to restore tax incentives that expired last year, including accelerated depreciation on purchases of long-term capital assets such as business aircraft.
Nextant Aerospace launched a financing plan that targets aircraft costing between $2 million and $10 million, a market it says has been underserved by banks in recent years. The company is offering a range of flexible financing packages for customers pursuing the Nextant 400XTi light jet and G90XT twin turboprop. Terms are available from two to 20 years, and a variety of lease types are available. Fixed or floating rates are offered, with fully amortizing or balloon payments.
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.
The private aircraft financing market in China has matured over the past several years with many sources of funding available for those wishing to purchase airplanes according to the experts here at ABACE. “I don’t think there is any lack of financing alternatives available,” said Jeffrey Lowe, general manager of aircraft ownership consultancy Asian Sky Group. “Pretty much all the international lenders are here and all the Chinese lender banks are involved in business aviation as well. A lot of them have set up leasing arms, so they are all diving in head first.”
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.
Heading into the homestretch of 2013, the upbeat mood that ushered in the new year has been building into the summer step-climb that gets a catapult shot–courtesy of the NBAA convention–to finish out the year. Someone must have hit the “on” switch after Labor Day weekend in early September, bringing buyers back into the market en masse. While deals have abounded in all model segments for some time, the recent activity is a strong sign of buyer confidence. From top to bottom aircraft are moving, and it’s no wonder considering how low prices have dropped.
“Demand for business jets is far from robust, but at the margin some developments suggest improvement,” J.P.Morgan aerospace analysts said in their latest business jet monthly update, released on Tuesday.
The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) recently launched AOPA Aviation Finance (AAF) Company, a loan brokerage venture aimed at matching association members who require aircraft purchase financing with suitable lenders. It will also help facilitate member loans for avionics updates, either through straight loans using the aircraft as collateral when it is fully owned, or through refinancing of the aircraft while it is still being paid off.
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