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BlueSky Business Aviation News | 1st October 2015 | Issue #338
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United States

NBAA applauds Senate passage of FAA extension bill

National Business Aviation Association President and CEO Ed Bolen has commended the U.S. Senate for unanimously approving legislation to fund the Federal Aviation Administration through March 2016.

It now heads to President Obama, who is expected to sign the bill into law before the current authorization expires on Sept. 30.

The bill was introduced in the House of Representatives last week by Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman Bill Shuster (R-9-PA) and Ways and Means Chairman Paul Ryan (R-1-WI). It would continue the FAA¹s existing structure and priorities through March 31, 2016, while debate continues on a long-term plan for the agency.

"The business aviation community applauds the Senate for recognizing the importance of FAA operations," Bolen said. "This extension ensures the FAA can continue its essential work uninterrupted."

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Red Aviation acquires DFW Instrument LLC

Continues Expansion of Services in North Texas.

Red Aviation, a leading provider of parts and services for Global, Challenger, Lear, and Gulfstream aircraft, recently announced the acquisition of DFW Instrument, LLC in Addison, Texas.

“We are excited to have DFW Instrument become part of the Red Aviation group of services,” commented Steve Davis, president and CEO for-Red Aviation. “Karen and I have known James Zollo since we started our businesses and have great respect for him and his wife Nina, and the successful company they have built. We look forward to working with the entire DFW Instrument team to provide the industry with more innovative service and repair solutions for today’s aircraft.”

Dedicated to high-quality workmanship, DFW Instrument has provided flight critical instrument and equipment repairs to the industry for 25 years. DFW Instrument’s expertise consists of a wide range of Air Data Equipment, Engine Instruments, Flight Directors, Horizon Situation Indicators, Gyroscopes and repair of other products.

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Daher appoints Exec Aero as TBM Service Center for Central Florida

Daher has announced the appointment of Orlando, Florida-based Exec Aero LLC as the TBM Service Center serving TBM customers based in Central Florida, and for all visiting TBM aircraft to the world’s “capital city” of entertainment parks.

Exec Aero was created by former employees of Flight Express Inc., a cargo and courier company that was one of the largest FAA Part 135 carriers in the United States. Flight Express was well known for its strict adherence to the highest quality standards in aircraft maintenance, fleet management and business management.

“We selected Exec Aero because its team showed all of the positive attributes for great customer service, which was confirmed by the many years of experience in this sector," said Charles A. Holomek, Vice-President Customer Support for the Americas of Daher’s Airplane Business Unit.

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Landmark Aviation in Sioux Falls named Beechcraft Authorized Service Center

Landmark Aviation has announced that its Sioux Falls, South Dakota facility located at Joe Foss Field Airport (FSD) has been named a Beechcraft Authorized Service Facility for Bonanza and Baron series aircraft.

Landmark Aviation at FSD is now a preferred MRO facility for basic through heavy maintenance on all Baron and Bonanza aircraft.

“I’m happy to announce this expansion of our services as well as our relationship with Textron Aviation,” Landmark Aviation’s Vice President of MRO Skip Madsen explained. “We are always looking to expand our capabilities and offerings in order to better serve our customers. We have been working diligently to obtain this authorization and look forward to serving an expanded customer base in this region.”

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U.S. Aviation Fuel Prices


Stuart Jet Center (KSUA) breaks ground on state-of-the-art hangar

Avfuel-branded FBO Stuart Jet Center at Witham Field - recently named Florida’s General Aviation Airport of the Year by the Florida Department of Transportation - broke ground for its new, state-of-the art hangar this week.

To be completed in early 2016, the new hangar will add the much-needed space Stuart Jet Center requires as it continues to grow. The 24,000 square foot hangar facility will complement the 250,000 square footage of existing hangar space, along with more than 15 acres of lighted and secure ramp space.

The new hangar is sized to accommodate aircraft up to Global Express and G650, and will be wind-coded to Miami-Dade specifications for optimum safety.

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Advent Aerospace’s Jormac division celebrates 20 years serving business aviation

Jormac Aerospace, a division of Advent Aerospace, is celebrating 20 years of serving business and corporate aviation operators and completion centers from around the world.

Launched on September 30th, 1995 by founders Steve Jourdenais and Mike McAllister, the company has grown into one of the premier providers of components and systems for VVIP business and wide-body aircraft.

The company began operations as a two-man startup, doing stress analysis for aircraft modifications. With Jourdenais and McAllister working out of their respective homes, often meeting at a gas station mid-way between each to exchange paperwork, the company’s most consistent work involved passenger-to-cargo conversions of Boeing 727 aircraft.

The advent of the Boeing BBJ proved to be a turning point for the company, when Chrysler Technologies Airborne Systems (CTAS) hired the company to do all of its stress analysis for its BBJ projects. From there, CTAS contracted Jormac to design the modifications, in addition to doing the stress analysis, and soon after to build them. Since then, Jormac has worked on 96 BBJ aircraft completions - providing 58 of those aircraft with VIP headliner systems.

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Flying Colours Corp

Clint Bloom

Flying Colours Corp is broadening the expertise of its sales team with the appointment of former Bombardier Aerospace interiors specialist Clint Bloom as Sales Manager - Interiors.

Clint will be based in Tucson, Arizona, with a remit that covers the entire USA and Canada, as required.

Reporting to Kevin Kliethermes, Director of Sales, Clint brings a wealth of experience to the company assisting clients through all aspects of the refurbishment process. He is especially familiar with the Bombardier Challenger and Global families having worked for the OEM for 16 years focused on customer refurbishment and green completion projects. Now he will offer Flying Colours Corp. clients another point of contact on their interior refurbishment and completion projects.

“Heightened customer demand and enhanced territory coverage - for both the US and Canada necessitated driving this expansion,” said Executive Vice President Sean Gillespie. “We are delighted to welcome someone of Clint’s caliber to the team.”

FlightSafety International

Jeff Rose

FlightSafety International announces that Jeff Rose has been promoted to Manager of the company’s Learning Center in Atlanta, Georgia. He succeeds Ed Klonoski who has retired from FlightSafety.

“All of us with FlightSafety sincerely appreciate the many contributions Ed made during his more than 20 years of service,” said Bruce Whitman, President & CEO. “We thank Ed for his commitment to serve and support our Customers and Teammates and wish him all the best in retirement.”

Jeff joined FlightSafety in 2001 as an instructor for the Cessna Citation 500 series of aircraft at the company’s Learning Center in Toledo, Ohio. He was named Program Manager of Citation Ultra aircraft training in 2004, and became the Program Manager of Hawker 400XP training in 2006. Jeff was promoted to Director of Standards in 2007 and then to Director of Training prior to serving as Assistant Manager of the Learning Center in Savannah, Georgia.

He holds an Airline Transport Pilot Certificate and is a Certified Flight Instructor with Instrument and Multi-Engine Instructor ratings. Jeff also holds type ratings in the Cessna Citation CE-500 and Beechjet BE-400/Mitsubishi MU-300 aircraft and was a captain and check airman for a Part 135 on-demand Air Carrier prior to joining FlightSafety.

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United States

NBAA welcomes legislation resolving federal excise tax issues for management companies

The National Business Aviation Association has welcomed the introduction of congressional legislation that makes clear management services provided to assist an aircraft owner in the operation of its aircraft are not subject to the ticket tax imposed on commercial air transportation.

Introduced by Rep. Pat Tiberi (R-12-OH) on Sept. 24, House Bill 3608 would exempt from the ticket tax component of federal excise tax, any amounts paid by the aircraft owner for maintenance and support of their aircraft by a management services company, such as for crew scheduling and dispatch, flight planning services, insurance, and aircraft maintenance. The exemption is limited to non-commercial flights by the aircraft owner on its aircraft or an aircraft obtained through a qualifying lease. read more

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Dr. Adnan Branbo, CEO of iJET, a flight support service provider based in Malta and Dubai, continues his series of insights into International trip planning. This week . . .

Operating your business flight to Sri Lanka

fter a devastating 30 year civil war that ended in 2009, Sri Lanka is open to the world now.

The country has an immense potential for growth. Rich natural resources, high literacy rate, and growing tourism sector all contribute to year after year growth of the Sri Lankan economy.

Sri Lanka is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, and the government has enacted modern investment laws that encourage and facilitate foreign direct investment into Sri Lanka.

Based on this, we are witnessing increasing number of business aviation operations into Sri Lanka. While the government has big plans for the aviation sector in Sri Lanka, the current infrastructure and regulations make the business aviation operations to Sri Lanka more difficult than what the business aviation operators and travelers require and expect. We are going to cover the ground and flight support services aspects of operating a business flight to Sri Lanka. read more

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United States

Flexjet takes delivery of its first Embraer Legacy 500

Dallas-based fractional jet ownership services provider, Flexjet, has received its first Legacy 500 business jet from Embraer.

“It’s a great privilege to have been selected by Flexjet for the expansion of its world-class fleet,” said Marco Tulio Pellegrini, President & CEO, Embraer Executive Jets. “The Legacy 500, and soon the Legacy 450, will deliver true innovation to Flexjet customers, and we are committed to providing the highest level of customer support and service.”

Flexjet Chief Executive Officer Michael Silvestro said, “We know that current and prospective Owners are seeking cabins that are larger and more luxurious than those typically found in this category, complemented by the newest technology and optimized performance. We are thrilled to bring the innovative Legacy midsized cabin solution to the market starting this month.”

Flexjet’s fractional program already features the Embraer Phenom 300 light jet.

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United States

First 787 certified VIP electronic window shades

Jeff Bonner Research and Development has made another historical first by successfully completing burn and DO-160G testing for a new electronically controlled window shade designed specifically for 787 VIP conversions.

These cassette style assemblies are the first window shades to be certified and delivered to support a VIP 787 Dreamliner interior modification. The Dreamliner windows are 30% larger than most aircraft; however, JBRND’s window shade cassettes weigh only 5 lbs. with a carbon fiber version at 4 lbs. These dual shade units include a separate sheer and blackout shade in each unit.

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Top 25 European Departure Airports

BlueSky's '25 Most Popular Business Aviation Departure Airports in Europe' in association with Avinode

This monthly popularity ranking is based on the number of unique flight requests with their first passenger leg departing out of IACO codes starting with E, L, and U, transmitted through the Avinode Marketplace over the last 30 days.

For the full list click here



















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Pentastar Aviation unveils Aircraft Interior Design Studio

Pentastar Aviation has officially unveiled its new Aircraft Interior Design Studio at the company’s Oakland County International Airport headquarters. The new studio will support the company’s aircraft interior business.

”With the opening of this studio, our clients can meet our experts and touch and feel the high-quality materials we use to bring aircraft cabin visions to life,” said Chairman and Owner Edsel B. Ford II at the event that opened the facility.

Industry studies forecast that the global market for aircraft interior modification services could reach $17bn by 2019.

This trend compelled Pentastar to build a dedicated Interior Design Studio for its Aircraft Interiors operation. read more

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United States

FANS 1/A solution for Challenger 604 operators

Columbus, Ohio-based Spirit Aeronautics has announced that the FAA Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) is now complete and the company is offering Future Airspace Navigation System (FANS) 1/A capability for Bombardier’s Challenger 604 aircraft equipped with Rockwell Collins Pro Line 4 avionics.

The STC upgrade is straightforward and utilizes the current flight management system (FMS) and control display units (CDUs) coupled with a new communications management unit (CMU) to achieve integrated FANS 1/A capabilities. read more


'Miracle on the Hudson' Capt. Chesley 'Sully' Sullenberger to address NBAA2015

Hailed as a hero after successfully landing his crippled Airbus in New York's Hudson River and saving all passengers on board, retired US Airways Capt. Chesley B. “Sully” Sullenberger III will be a featured speaker during the second-day Opening General Session at NBAA's Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA2015), taking place Nov. 17 to 19 in Las Vegas, NV.

Sullenberger, along with his first officer, Jeffrey Skiles, effected a remarkable engine-out water landing in the river on Jan. 15, 2009, after the Airbus 320-200 suffered multiple bird strikes that disabled both power plants. They engineered the water landing so perfectly that all of the 155 passengers and crew survived, and the incident became known as the 

"Miracle on the Hudson." The Guild of Air Pilots and Air Navigators awarded the Master's Medal to Sullenberger, Skiles and the rest of the Flight 1549 crew for their efforts. read more

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United Arab Emirates

Etihad and Chapman Freeborn announce A380 and private jet collaboration

Etihad Airways has unveiled a new partnership with leading global aircraft charter specialist Chapman Freeborn, to complement its exclusive The Residence and First Apartment cabins, both available on the airline’s Airbus A380 fleet.

The agreement with Chapman Freeborn is to promote and market the luxurious living spaces to its top-tier clientele, giving them the opportunity to receive the levels of luxury, discretion and technology they expect on private jet, which can now be enjoyed on Etihad Airways’ longhaul network. read more

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United Kingdom

BBGA talks up bizav at BGAD 2015

While the overall trend for business aviation has not fully recovered since the peak of 2008 there are some notable emerging bright spots, delegates attending BGAD (Business General Aviation Day) 2015 at London Biggin Hill Airport this month heard.

The UK is ahead of this growth curve but in the political landscape there is still much to do BBGA CEO Marc Bailey noted.

Highlights include a growth of 10% in the Very Light Jet market, while business turboprop activity, led by the venerable Textron Beechcraft King Air, is firmly back to year 2009 flying levels. Piston-engined aircraft also saw a significant growth last year, according to leading business aviation analysts WINGX Advance.

Business aviation aircraft regularly engaged in multi mission roles - in SAR, medevac and surveillance and currently account for 22% of activity in Europe, complementing the productive and time saving roles they fulfil moving company executives swiftly between factories and production bases.

“Demand in the lower end of the market reflects a sector that is predominantly business led,” said Richard Koe, WINGX Managing Director. “Currently 50% of all business jet activity in Europe is flown by light jets. Business turboprops account for 30% of movements although ultra-long range bizjet flying is up too - 12% over last year. This summer the average number of passengers flying on these bigger jets was below capacity, averaging 2.5 passengers,” he said.

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United Arab Emirates

ExecuJet grows managed fleet by over 20% in the Middle East

ExecuJet is expanding its managed fleet in the Middle East with the addition of three large-cabin business jets over the past three months, with a further two scheduled through to the end of the December, growth of over 20%.

New additions include a Bombardier Global 5000, a Dassault Falcon 2000, a Gulfstream G450 and two Bombardier Global 5000 Vision aircraft.

Mike Berry, ExecuJet’s Vice President Middle East, says: “As we continue to receive positive feedback and referrals from our customers globally, we are experiencing very high interest in ExecuJet’s aircraft management offering in the Middle East. Adding these state-of-the-art aircraft to our managed fleet follows the general trend in the region towards ultra-long-range Global and Gulfstream aircraft and we are delighted to be expanding at such a pace. This success is testament to our high levels of customer service, safety and quality.”

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United Kingdom

CAAi unveils new online licensing system for aviation authorities

A new electronic licensing system for National Aviation Authorities (NAAs) that allows aviation professionals to apply, renew and manage licences online has been launched by CAA International (CAAi) and New Zealand-based technology partner, Aspeq Ltd.

Developed using the latest HTML5 and Microsoft.Net technology, the new e-Licensing System is fully compatible with CAAi’s existing e-Examination System, that has already been implemented by numerous Aviation Authorities, including the UK CAA, worldwide.

Using pre-set workflows tailored to NAA regulatory requirements, the e-Licensing system can immediately determine an applicant’s licence eligibility through a unique “Am I Ready” validation. When candidates do not meet the prerequisites, the system highlights areas of deficiency and guides candidates through a step-by-step process to submission, without NAA staff intervention. Candidates can track the status of an application online, and Approved Training Organisation can easily manage mass applications for trainees or existing licence holders applying for ratings or extensions.

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Paula Kraft, founder and President of Atlanta, GA-based Tastefully Yours Catering.

Size Matters

o, did I get your attention?

Now take your mind out of the gutter and let’s talk about food portion sizes.

Why is there so much talk everywhere about the rise in obesity? Who’s to blame? Is it the food? Is it Processed vs. Fresh: Quantity vs. Price? Could the answer be that many of us exercise less, or it is just the lifestyle we lead? Perhaps larger portioning is a sign of past times and we’re all changing our desires as we become more influenced by the new generation?

This generation is our future and their wish for healthier, lighter meals with more choices – such as vegetarian and vegan options – together with smaller portions and fresh local produce is our responsibility to offer, as catering sources.

Are the aviation food portions to blame for weight gain, or is it your irregular hours and eating patterns?

Well, I couldn’t help but give this some thought as I look at myself and wonder why I can gain weight when I have a kitchen full of chefs who can prepare any diet meal I may conjure up in my mind to help me lose it. For me, I know the problem is that I just can’t resist the delicious smells waffling from the sauté pans, and the bakery ovens. Oh yes, I’m weak and I know it! And, I will never say no to sampling anything new created in my kitchen or some new flavor profile I see or smell as I travel.

The CDC (Center for Disease Control) states that portion sizes have increased almost 400% in the last 60 years. That is 4 times more food per serving. I found this example of the growth of portion size over the last 20 years and I thought you might enjoy seeing it. I was amazed . . .

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FL Technics to launch subsidiary in Thailand

FL Technics - a global provider of one-stop-shop MRO services headquartered in Vilnius, Lithuania - continues to expand its presence in the emerging markets.

The company is set to open a subsidiary in Thailand with its main office in the capital city, Bangkok. Backed by official approval from the Board of Investment of the Kingdom of Thailand, the Bangkok office will act as the centre of operations for coordinating all company’s activities in Vietnam, the Philippines, Myanmar, Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia and other countries in the region.

“The decision to establish a regional centre in Thailand came naturally, since the country is the geographical epicentre of Southeast Asia as well as one of the two major aviation hubs in the region," said Zilvinas Lapinskas, CEO of FL Technics. "Thailand's commercial MRO spending is already valued at close to $771m and is expected to reach $1.35bn by 2024. Thailand is like Singapore - a true heart of the Southeast Asia’s aviation."

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Cote d'Ivoire

Astra Aviation signs ground handling agreement with National Aviation Services in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire

Astra Aviation, the dedicated African flight support company, has signed a new Ground Handling Agreement with airport services provider, National Aviation Services (NAS), at Felix Houphouet Boigny Airport, Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire.

Under the terms of the agreement NAS, part of the Agility group, will provide the physical ground handling, whilst Astra, via its local company and offices, will handle and coordinate the customers’ requests, along with managing the administration of payments for airport, handling, navigation and crew costs.

This is the first time that Astra has signed a full SGHA with NAS and will ensure Astra Aviation customers receive improved service levels, an enhanced professional approach to ground handling, along with transparency and efficiency in contracting and payments. The combination of Astra Aviation’s experience of providing flight support services in Africa, with the know-how of NAS is set to raise the bar for ground handling in Cote d’Ivoire.

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Air Charter Service grows Asia Pacific market share

Air Charter Service’s offices in Hong Kong and Beijing have reported that they are having a record year, with all three divisions across the two offices showing considerable growth year on year.

Stephen Fernandez, Managing Director of the operation, puts this down to a number of factors: “Obviously the West Coast Port Strike in the US gave us a massive boost at the beginning of the year on the cargo side but, even taking those figures out, charter numbers are up 59% on last year.

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Air Partner Chief Executive Mark Briffa talks exclusively to BlueSky read

Operating your business flight to Oman. Dr. Adnan Branbo, CEO of iJET, continues his series of insights into International trip planning. read

Navigating trade show pileups. Ashley Bowen Cook, vice president at Greteman Group. read

Baristas in the Sky? Paula Kraft, founder and President of Atlanta, GA-based Tastefully Yours Catering. read

BBA Aviation to expand Signature with proposed acquisition of Landmark Aviation read

More stories in our

Industry Supplements

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SaxonAir launch official partnership with Norwich City Football Club
SaxonAir Charter Ltd based at Norwich International Airport, UK, has announced a partnership with Norwich City Football Club as the preferred air travel provider for the club. SaxonAir has supplied aircraft charter services to Norwich City FC since the company was formed over eight years ago.

Alex Durand, SaxonAir CEO said “We are delighted to develop our relationship with Norwich City Football Club, as we welcome their return to the Premier League. Our partnership enables us to enhance our services to the club, players and staff, and also to develop travel options for supporters. We also welcome the initiative from the club to work closer with partner businesses to collectively strengthen the profile of Norwich and the local region.”

Stephen Hobin, Norwich City Football Club’s Head of Partnership’s says “We are really pleased to build upon our already great relationship with SaxonAir. The partnership see’s the clubs first team and backroom staff fly to a selection of away fixtures using aircraft based at SaxonAir’s headquarters at Norwich International Airport. He goes on to say “Our geographical location lends itself to flying to away games when travelling long distances to give the team the best possible preparation. As the partnership grows we are looking to work closely with the team at SaxonAir to extend their great services to our supporters and commercial business partners.”

Pictured left to right; SaxonAir Group Commercial Director, Christopher Mace, SaxonAir CEO Alex Durand, Norwich City FC Head of Partnerships Stephen Hobin and SaxonAir Deputy Sales Manager Shaun Elliott.

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