The meteoric sales pace set by Embraer for its new line of very light jets only gained more momentum at this year’s NBAA Convention, as the Brazilian manufacturer announced no fewer than three large orders worth $188 million at list prices during the first two days of the event.
As long as manufacturers keep selling business jets, buyers will continue filling the cabins with the posh, the luxurious and, occasionally, the downright outlandish. The consensus among those with a front-row view of the completion and refurbishment industry these days is that the money is coming in faster than they can help everyone spend it. But is all this activity trickling down to the independent completion and refurbishment centers?
From very large to very light jets about to crest the horizon, Pratt & Whitney Canada engines power some of business aviation’s most exciting designs. Anticipation and optimism are whetting the appetite for information not only about the airplanes, but also the engines that will propel them and the systems that will guide them. The NBAA Convention, as usual, serves as the venue for digesting a year’s worth of news.
Frederico Fleury Curado is to succeed Mauricio Botelho as president and CEO of Embraer next April. Following a previously announced transition schedule, Botelho will then stay with the Brazilian airframer as chairman for a further two years before retiring. Curado is currently Embraer’s airline market executive vice president.
Embraer today said Houston-based Magnum Jet has placed an order for 50 Phenom 100s, with options for another 50 Phenom 100s and/or 300s. The start-up company plans to offer “a turnkey ownership and comprehensive management program for very light jet owners and will operate…air limousine service for regional travel.” Magnum Jet is scheduled to take delivery of its first Phenom 100 in early 2009.
The much-anticipated very light jet (VLJ) air-taxi market is beginning to take shape with operators gearing up for the start of service in the eastern U.S. and Europe. VLJ fractional ownership companies also have been formed in Canada and California, a sure sign that the era of the VLJ is about to begin in earnest.
According to ExcelAire, the Ronkonkoma, N.Y.-based charter company whose Embraer Legacy 600 was involved in the midair collision with a 737 over Brazil on September 29, a court in Brazil has issued a preliminary order, the purpose of which is to “render inalienable” any assets of ExcelAire that may be located in Brazil. “The practical effect of the order is limited to preventing the sale of the damaged Legacy jet,” according to the company.
Boeing 737-8EH and Embraer EMB 135BJ Legacy 600, Peixoto Azevedo, Brazil, Sept. 29, 2006–Legacy N600XL, operated by ExcelAire, was involved in a midair collision with GOL Flight 1907, a Boeing 737, at about 37,000 feet. The Embraer landed at Cachimbo Air Base; none of the seven people aboard was injured. The 737, en route to Brasilia, crashed in the jungle and all six crew members and 149 passengers were killed.
Honeywell jump-started its 2006 NBAA Convention appearance by announcing a series of customer support initiatives as the Orlando gathering began. The initiatives are designed to simplify internal processes and improve customer service.
Aerospace Products International announced that it will open a 172,000-sq-ft facility in Southaven, Miss. The location is approximately three miles from the Memphis International Airport and the FedEx hub. API will consolidate four of its warehouse facilities into a recently completed distribution center developed by Industrial Developments International (IDI) early next year.