A persistently optimistic outlook was in evidence at the first Large Executive & VIP Aircraft Conference: Opening speaker Arnaud Martin, program director of corporate and VIP aircraft for Airbus, noted that while sales are suffering as a result of a depressed U.S. economy, “The market is still alive.” The event, held December 11 and 12 in Hamburg, Germany, attracted some 50 delegates.
Lufthansa Technik has signed a contract to do its first cabin completion on an executive version of the new Boeing 747-8. The four-engine airplane is scheduled to arrive at the company’s Hamburg, Germany completion center in early 2011 and will be delivered to the unidentified customer 18 months later.
AMAC Aerospace is preparing to open as a new completions, refurbishment and maintenance provider for business aircraft in August. The Swiss start-up company is being founded by former Jet Aviation CEO Heinz Köhli and will be based at EuroAirport Basel-Mulhouse-Freiburg, near Jet Aviation’s completions center. In late October, AMAC signed a 35-year lease on a 452,000-sq-ft site at the airport.
For the better part of a year, Airbus has been referring to the executive version of its A380 as the Flying Palace, so it seemed appropriate that the first customer should be royalty–Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal bin Abdulaziz Alsaud.
AMAC Aerospace is preparing to open a new business aviation completions, refurbishment and maintenance facility in Switzerland next August. The Swiss start-up company, founded by former Jet Aviation CEO Heinz Kohli, will be based at EuroAirport Basel-Mulhouse-Freiburg, near Jet Aviation’s completions center in Basel. In late October, AMAC signed a 35-year lease on a 452,000-sq-ft site at the airport.
Although Gulfstream Aerospace has repeatedly denied speculation that it is working on a G600, thought to be a composite-fuselage, long-range widebody business twinjet, last month’s announcement of four new directors at the Savannah, Ga. headquarters hints that the company is looking at new design elements.
The first four years of the 2000s have been a trial for aviation. While the decade got off to a heady start in 2000 with the high times of the late-1990s boom still going strong, by the spring of 2001 the industry’s fortunes were taking a southerly course.
Saudi Arabian Airlines has signed a MoU for 22 A320 narrowbodies, heralding the eventual signing of the first order by the Kingdom’s flag carrier for Airbus airplanes in some two decades, Airbus announced here yesterday. The agreement allows the flag carrier to increase the order by eight aircraft of the same type.
Over the last five years, no other region in the world has seen air travel, as measured by revenue-passenger kilometers and cargo traffic, grow faster than the Middle East, which has experienced an average growth rate of 12 percent. Boeing forecasts the future passenger traffic growth rate of the region to be 5.2 percent through 2026.
With a characteristically nimble response to market demand, Emirates Airline hastily re-scheduled an announcement here yesterday of more than $30 billion worth of aircraft orders to accommodate the presence of Dubai ruler HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum.