CAE announced yesterday that it will start accepting Avcard, an aviation charge card from World Fuel Services, as a form of payment at its business aviation training centers in Dallas and New York. Avcard acceptance allows CAE customers to earn FlyBuys Rewards when they pay for training with the card. CAE plans eventually to expand this payment option to its other business aircraft training facilities, including those in Amsterdam, São Paulo, Shanghai, Dubai, London and Phoenix. The company offers training on more than 80 business aircraft platforms.
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Signature Flight Support has signed a deal with Imperial Oil of Canada that could see the service provider chain add as many as 38 FBOs to its network. The agreement offers all Canadian Esso-branded FBOs the option to become members of the Signature network or to join the service provider’s Signature Select affiliate program. As part of the agreement, Imperial Oil will continue to be the fuel provider and the locations will continue to carry their Esso fuel branding, in addition to any possible Signature badges.
CAE said last week it had received Level D qualification of the world’s first simulator for the Boeing 747-8 freighter, a full-flight simulator (FFS) sold to Luxembourg-based Cargolux Airlines International. Luxembourg’s national aviation authority awarded the simulator EASA Level D qualification. CAE also announced November 12 that it had received Level D qualifications from the FAA for its first two Boeing 787 FFSs for undisclosed North American customers.
In a string of promotions announced yesterday at Bombardier but not effective until January 1, Eric Martel will be president of Bombardier Business Aircraft, succeeding Steve Ridolfi, who will be senior vice president of strategy and mergers and acquisitions at Bombardier Inc. Meanwhile, Michel Ouellette will take over Martel’s current position–president of Bombardier customer services and specialized and amphibious aircraft–also at the turn of the new year.
Smartphone maker BlackBerry (née RIM) plans to close its corporate flight department as part of a comprehensive restructuring plan aimed at stemming losses that are set to total as much as $995 million during its second fiscal quarter, which ended last month. New chief executive Thorsten Heins has decided to sell a Bombardier Global Express that the Waterloo, Ontario-based company bought pre-owned as recently as July for an undisclosed price.
CAE has begun simulator training at its facility in Delhi, India. The training center, a joint venture between CAE and Interglobe, houses two full-flight simulators providing pilot and maintenance technician training for the region. According to the company, the six simulator bays will be able to train more than 5,000 professionals per year once they operating at full capacity. The center occupies 3.5 acres in the Greater Noida Industrial Area, about 25 miles southeast of Delhi.
The airline industry will need more than one million new pilots and technicians to operate and maintain new aircraft due for delivery over the next two decades, according to a new forecast from Boeing. The 2013 Pilot and Technician Outlook, released on Thursday at the launch of 787 training at the U.S. airframer’s Miami Flight Services campus, projects a requirement for 498,000 new airline pilots and 556,000 new maintenance technicians by 2032.
Canada’s WestJet has signed a letter of intent to buy 40 Boeing 737 Max 8s and 25 Max 7s, the Calgary-based low-fare carrier announced Thursday. The airline said it expects close a definitive purchase agreement with Boeing before September 30 and start taking deliveries in September 2017. Boeing values the order at $6.3 billion based on list prices.
Implementation of a new Brazilian requirement mandating the use of level-D simulators for renewing privately operated business aircraft type ratings has had to be postponed until next year due to a shortage of suitable training equipment in the country.
Bombardier delivered the first of 20 Q400 turboprops ordered by Calgary-based low-fare carrier WestJet on June 6. Plans called for WestJet’s new regional subsidiary, WestJet Encore, to start flying the airplanes on June 24 on new routes to Fort St. John and Nanaimo, British Columbia. The airline also plans to launch service to Brandon, Manitoba, on September 3, and open several new points in Alberta and Saskatchewan later in the year.