Greater Rochester International Airport (ROC) in upstate New York used to have two FBOs, but USAirports has purchased the Landmark Aviation FBO at the airport. USAirports will continue operating all the Landmark facilities and take over Landmark’s airliner fueling contract. Anthony Costello opened the Rochester USAirports FBO after launching his air cargo and hangar service in 1986.
Fixed base operator
Jeffrey Ross is at the helm of an unusual conglomeration of FBOs, a quasi-chain of 12 facilities that retain their original brand names instead of adopting a common brand for the entire group.
Independent FBOs face problems different from those of their chain counterparts, whose sheer size often makes it easier for them to address challenges. The Independent Fixed-Base Operators Association (IFBOA) held its first conference September 11 and 12 to help independent FBOs share information and best practices about how to tackle the curveballs of professional life.
The City of San Diego has issued a request for proposals for development of a 10-acre site at Brown Field Municipal Airport. Any aviation-related use will be considered, according to the RFP, which added that the site is ideal for an FBO, maintenance company, flight school, charter operation or hangar rental facility. The site was occupied by used car companies and housed an underground fuel farm, which has been removed.
London is one of the world’s most crowded and congested cities, but business aircraft operators flying to the British capital are spoiled for choice when it comes to landing options. Representatives from several of these airports and FBOs have made the trip here to Orlando to state their case for being NBAA showgoers’ home away from home on the other side of the Atlantic.
In just one year, the price paid at the refinery for jet-A in the U.S. has climbed 92.7 percent, reaching the $4-per-gallon mark early last month. The refinery price is a good place to start looking at fuel prices because it roughly equates to the cost of jet-A paid by FBOs before various fees, taxes and markups are added to decide the retail price.
Even before last month’s terrorist attacks, FBOs faced formidable business challenges. Those challenges may have changed significantly in the past few weeks, but they have not disappeared.
Jet Aviation’s main strength is in Europe, where 11 major facilities generate 60 percent of its income, and the U.S., with four major facilities and 18 support stations contributing much of the remaining 40 percent of total sales. The company’s major U.S. FBOs with service and maintenance capabilities are in Bedford, Mass. (near Boston), Dallas, Teterboro, N.J., and at West Palm Beach, Fla.
Members of the Independent Fixed Base Operators Association (IFBOA) can save money on credit-card processing charges under a new program offered by Jet Fleet International (JFI). “This program is an important component of our mission to provide enhanced purchasing and profitability opportunities to our growing membership,” said John Wraga, IFBOA founder and executive director.
Since December, business aircraft have been able to park at the new Royal Terminal at Kuwait International Airport, and the facility opened for passenger services in April. The new $42 million FBO is owned by Royal Aviation Kuwait and is managed by Mercury Air Group. Plans call for Royal Terminal’s grand opening to be held this month.