Satcom Direct (SD), the business aviation
connectivity solutions provider, is striding into its twentieth year,
kicking-off its celebrations at ABACE.
Responding to the diversifying connectivity
needs of the business aviation sector, SD has accomplished several major
milestones since ABACE 2016, including its first foray into the flight
operations management space.
In May 2016, it launched SD Pro, the aviation
software platform that helps flight departments keep real-time synchronization
with the aircraft through a single dashboard that monitors connectivity, flight
scheduling and tracking, as well as maintenance tracking.
As one of the first companies to recognize the
time and budgetary benefits of synching aircraft and flight departments, SD also
partnered with Universal Weather and Aviation, Inc. to incorporate trip planning
and trip support through SD Pro. Further infrastructure investment throughout
the year has also positioned SD as the only connectivity supplier to offer a
complete end-to-end military grade cybersecurity network for business aviation
through its Private Network services.
Three major acquisitions in 2016 added further
value for SD’s clients. In February SD acquired COMSAT, Inc., bringing the
ownership of two Satellite Earth Stations, and new infrastructure capabilities
to the business. AircraftLogs.com was acquired in August, adding web-based
aircraft flight scheduling and tax reporting features into SD Pro. In November,
the acquisition of hardware manufacturer TrueNorth Avionics expanded the
company’s avionics and connectivity products portfolio, enabling SD to offer
customers a nose to tail solution for all information, connectivity and
To round off the year, SD launched its second
certified training course, aeroCNCT, at this year’s ABACE. Designed for
crewmembers who need to become more familiar with all aspects of cabin
connectivity, this is the aviation industry’s first crewmember connectivity
“Asia was one of our first international
offices; the market has supported us, and grown with us, so we are delighted to
begin our twentieth anniversary celebrations at the Shanghai event. As our
product range diversifies, we are well placed to offer our clients an even
greater range of products to improve and enhance their fight experience,” said
Regional Director, Asia Pacific.
From its groundbreaking beginnings when SD
launched the patented Global One Number technology it has grown into a global
business supporting business aviation, heads of state, government and military
SD started in a beach house (inset) and 20
years later is in its state-of-the-art HQ.
Founded in 1997 by company chairman and CEO,
and originally based in the Satcom Direct “beach house” with a team of six
employees offering one product, the business now employs a team of nearly 400
worldwide, runs 16 offices, and offers a wide range of connectivity solutions.
The company is now headquartered in a 60,000-square foot purpose-built,
state-of-the-art, building in Melbourne, Florida. The campus is also home to
Terracom Direct, the company’s secure data storage centre that supports the SD
“From the seed of an idea we have pioneered
inflight connectivity for the international business aviation community. Thanks
to my solid management team, who are bursting with talent and innovative ideas,
we continue to go from strength to strength,” says Jensen about SD. “Since 1997,
connectivity has become an integral part of the business aviation sector. It is
no longer just about connecting a phone to a phone; to succeed you must be
innovative, create strong partner relationships and understand the needs of the
user. Passengers need reliable high- peed data access, crew need connected cabin
management systems, and the flight deck must maximize technology to be
synchronized with flight departments. The needs of the market drive our team to
continually create new products which we believe will improve the aviator and
passenger experience,” he concludes.
Launch of industry-first Cabin Crew
In further news from ABACE this week, Satcom
Direct has formally launched aeroCNCT, the industry’s first Crewmember Network
and Connectivity Training certificate program.
The aeroCNCT, or “aero connect”, course has
been created to support industry professionals that work with, or are
responsible for, connectivity during flight.
The aeroCNCT certified connectivity training
launched at ABACE2017.
AeroCNCT provides flight departments and crew
with knowledge and understanding of onboard connectivity, how handheld devices
affect flight operations, and how to troubleshoot basic cabin networking issues.
Developed with the input of experienced crewmembers, the course applies
realworld experience and perspective, and places emphasis on key cabin
connectivity areas such as: internet connection basics, network familiarization,
data management, flight operations preparation, and passenger device and
“Staying connected has become an essential
part of any flight as principals and customers expect systems to work. AeroCNCT
is designed to demystify the network and ensure crew have the confidence and
familiarization to fix basic technical issues inflight,” says
director of training, SD. “It will make their lives easier, while providing a
better connectivity experience for the passengers onboard.”
Two days of dynamic classroom training,
provided by qualified SD trainers, includes hands-on experience and exam
preparation. This is supplemented by online access to study material, available
via Choice Platform, which can be conveniently undertaken at the student’s
individual pace to balance busy flight schedules. On-site training, also
provided by qualified SD trainers, is available for operators and corporate
Candidates who successfully complete the exam,
developed with CompTIA to maintain industry standards, are awarded a
professional credential. The proctored exam can be completed at Pearson Vue
testing centers worldwide, or at Satcom Direct’s world headquarters in
Melbourne, Florida. The aeroCNCT certification is valid for three years, and can
be renewed via online or classroom training, similar to other cabin crew
certifications from SD and it’s training partners.
AeroIT: More than 200 certifications awarded
as SD adds courseware updates
The new aeroCNCT course complements SD’s
existing aeroIT certification. Created for IT, management and aviation
networking professionals, aeroIT provides essential information about airborne
connectivity systems and more than 200 students have now achieved the
professional accreditation since its launch in May 2015.
To maintain currency, SD has added a series of
updates to the aeroIT certification course. The new aeroIT eBook allows students
to access and review material digitally, and incorporates a comprehensive search
function. Online access to SD Learn-To videos, hands-on lab experience, and
additional test preparation via online assessment has also been added.
Candidates can also choose to take the final exam at the SD training facility in
Melbourne, or at Pearson Vue testing centers worldwide.