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BlueSky Business Aviation News | 3rd October 2019 | Issue #527
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International Business and Private Aviation Industry News

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United States:

SGS acquires majority stake in ARGUS

ARGUS International has announced that SGS, the world’s largest certification, verification, and inspection company, has acquired a majority stake. The acquisition aims to strengthen SGS’s aviation auditing and consulting services and increase market penetration through the organizations’ leveraged synergies.

“ARGUS is a globally recognized brand name in the airline, business aviation, fixed-wing, and rotary engine markets. Their broad client base and international activities will help SGS grow and keep pace with the increasing global demand of air traffic and safety”, said Frankie Ng, CEO of SGS.

SGS has an extensive history spanning over 140 years in verification and inspection, ensuring organizational safety, quality, and adherence to regulatory standards across a broad range of industry verticals.

This storied history and unique perspective will further enhance ARGUS International’s offerings and accelerate its mission to exceptionally deliver relevant and valuable information solutions to the business aviation, air carrier, rotary-wing, UAS, and overall aerospace industry.


click to visit VALCORA


Bombardier celebrates Global 6500 entry-into-service

Hard on the heels of Transport Canada certification of both the Global 5500 and 6500 awarded on September 24th, Bombardier is celebrating the entry-into-service of the latest addition to its Global family, the Global 6500 jet.

The aircraft will make its public debut at the National Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA-BACE) in Las Vegas on October 22.

Global 6500

The aircraft went through the rigorous flight testing program, which was completed at Bombardier’s world-class test centre in Wichita, Kansas.

The Pearl 15 engine, the latest addition to Rolls-Royce’s exceptional business aviation engine portfolio, received EASA certification in 2018 and Transport Canada certification recently.


click to visit Success Aviation Services.

United States:

UPS achieves FAA Part 135 certification for drone deliveries

The Federal Aviation Administration has awarded air carrier and operator certification to an unmanned aircraft system delivery company, UPS Flight Forward.

“This is a big step forward in safely integrating unmanned aircraft systems into our airspace, expanding access to healthcare in North Carolina and building on the success of the national UAS Integration Pilot Program to maintain American leadership in unmanned aviation,” said US Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao.

UPS Drone

Through the Department’s Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Integration Pilot Program, the FAA has now approved a Part 135 operating certificate for UPS Flight Forward. This allows the company to perform revenue-generating package delivery activities within federal regulations. UPS Flight Forward may now operate multiple drones under one certificate. Under Part 135, the company can deliver vital healthcare supplies including by flying beyond visual line of sight.


click to visit Flower Aviation at KPUB


Magic Johnson to Keynote at NBAA-BACE

The 2019 National Business Aviation Association Convention & Exhibition (NBAA-BACE) will host a compelling roster of speakers throughout the event’s two keynote sessions, with NBA legend and entrepreneur Earvin “Magic” Johnson delivering the Day 1 Keynote on the show’s opening day, Tuesday, October 22nd.

Earvin “Magic” Johnson

Earvin “Magic” Johnson

“Magic Johnson’s career, both in sports and in business, has been built around a dedication to leadership by example and service to others,” NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen said. “We look forward to hearing his perspectives, including with regard to how business aviation has been instrumental in his work to build his business enterprises and invest in communities.”

A two-time inductee into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame, Johnson spent 13 seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers, during which he won three NBA Most Valuable Player Awards and played in nine NBA finals. Today, Johnson is chairman and CEO of Magic Johnson Enterprises, working to provide high-quality products and services that focus primarily on ethnically diverse and underserved urban communities.


Click to visit Pratt & Whitney Canada


OJets adds Global 5000 to charter fleet

OJets, a privately-owned provider of comprehensive business aviation services, has announced the addition of a Bombardier Global 5000 to its fleet of charter aircraft.

OJets’ all-Bombardier fleet now comprises six aircraft: four Global 6000s, a Global 5000 and a Challenger 650. As per the rest of the fleet, the Global 5000 will operate under Elit’Avia’s Maltese AOC.

From its headquarters at Singapore’s Seletar Airport and sales offices in Hong Kong, OJets is committed to delivering industry-defining service - tailored to the most discerning Asian and international business travelers.

OJets adds Global 5000 to charter fleet

“We are pleased to announce the continued growth of our fleet,” says Philippe Crevier, Senior EVP, OJets. “Our Bombardier business aircraft provide the ease and comfort of intercontinental access and the finest luxuries, including dedicated workspaces and lavishly appointed sleeping configurations. Adding our latest Global to Elit’Avia’s Maltese AOC continues to leverage the proven success of our indirect carrier business model. With more aircraft in service, we have the opportunity to extend our unique brand of excellence, luxury and convenience to more discerning travelers worldwide.”


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Teterboro, New Jersey:

Meridian's Lou Ramm honored as 'Master Mechanic'

Meridian Air Charter’s Director of Quality Assurance, Lou Ramm, has been awarded the prestigious Charles Taylor Award Master Mechanic Award.

Robert Thorson, FAA Safety Team Program Manager, presented Lou with the award during a formal reception at Meridian's Teterboro headquarters, attended by members of the Quality Assurance, Charter, and Maintenance teams, together with Executive Management and Lou’s wife, JoAnne.

Lou Ramm

The Charles Taylor Master Mechanic Award is named in honor of Mr. Charles Taylor, the first aviation mechanic in powered flight. Mr. Taylor served as the Wright brothers’ mechanic and is credited with designing and building the engine for their first successful aircraft. The award recognizes the lifetime accomplishments of senior mechanics. In order to be eligible, the recipient must hold a US Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) or Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) mechanic or repairman certificate, and have 50 or more years of civil and military maintenance experience.

Lou received his Aircraft and Powerplant (A&P) license in 1969. He then served in Army Aviation as a Crew Chief / DS Maintenance Platoon Supervisor. His experience has included both fixed and rotary wing aircraft in general aviation, both corporate and charter.

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Christophe Degoumois

Christophe Degoumois

Bombardier has announced the appointment of Christophe Degoumois as Vice President of Sales, International, for Bombardier Business Aircraft, overseeing business jet sales in all regions outside the Americas.

Mr. Degoumois joined Bombardier in 2004 as a Sales Director, occupying roles of increasing responsibility over the last 15 years, including Vice President of Sales in China and the Asia-Pacific.

In his most recent mandate, he was Vice President of Sales for Europe, Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).

His expanded role will include the above regions as well as China, the Asia-Pacific, the Middle East and Africa.

Six West

Aine Scully

Aine Scully

Six West, a world leading provider of flight operations services to aircraft lessors, airlines and private aviation announced that Aine Scully has been appointed to serve on the company’s Board of Directors.

Aine also leads Six West’s finance team as Director of Finance, in conjunction with her new appointment.

Co-founder Jason Williamson said, “With a career spanning over 17 years, Aine has worked with some of the finest brands in technology, insurance and publishing, and I am delighted to have her on our Board of Directors.

"Her vision, experience and input are instrumental to Six West’s strategic development as we continue to provide safe and innovative solutions to aircraft lessors.”

click to visit Global Jet Services

United Kingdom:

Macquarie acquires Farnborough Airport

Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets ('MIRA') - via Macquarie European Infrastructure Fund 6 - has acquired Farnborough Airport from a consortium of private investors.

Farnborough Airport, the only dedicated business aviation airport in the United Kingdom, handles more than 30,000 air traffic movements each year and was the world’s first dedicated business aviation airport to receive carbon neutral status from Airports Council International. Its facilities and services have seen it named Europe’s best FBO facility since 2005.

Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets acquires Farnborough Airport

Leigh Harrison, Head of MIRA EMEA, said: “We are delighted to announce our investment in Farnborough Airport. In addition to holding an important place in UK aviation history, the airport is known for its high-quality offering to customers. Drawing on our extensive experience managing airport infrastructure around the world, we look forward to partnering with Farnborough Airport to ensure it remains an important contributor to the local economy and a business aviation gateway to London and the South East.”


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Melbourne, Florida:

Embraer Praetor 500 receives EASA and FAA approval

Embraer's new Praetor 500 midsize business jet has been granted its Type Certificate by the European Union Aviation Safety Agency and the Federal Aviation Administration.

The aircraft received regulatory approval from Brazil’s Civil Aviation Authority (ANAC - Agência Nacional de Aviação Civil) in August, less than a year after having been announced in October 2018 at NBAA-BACE.

Embraer Praetor 500 receives EASA and FAA approval

The Praetor 500 surpassed its certification goals achieving an intercontinental range of 3,340 nautical miles (6,186 km - NBAA IFR Reserves with four passengers), a high-speed cruise of 466 KTAS, a full-fuel payload of 1,600 lb (726 kg), a takeoff distance of only 4,222 ft (1,287 m) and an unfactored landing distance of 2,086 ft (636 m). For a 1,000-nautical-mile mission, the take-off distance is a mere 2,842 ft (867 m).


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Wichita, Kansas:

Flagship Citation Longitude enters service

Textron Aviation has announced the first deliveries of the company’s new flagship Cessna Citation Longitude super-midsize business jet, signaling the start of a new dimension in business travel. The Longitude received FAA type certification on September 21, 2019.

“The newly certified Citation Longitude brings unrivaled technology to the business travel market, for both the passenger and the pilot, offering our customers the most efficient and productive super-midsize jet now in operation,” said Ron Draper, president and CEO. “We are thrilled to now transition this program into service.”

Flagship Citation Longitude enter service

The clean-sheet design of the Longitude integrates the latest technology throughout the aircraft, including the next evolution of the Garmin G5000 flight deck. The comfortable, bespoke interior of the Longitude has class-leading legroom, cabin sound levels that are nearly twice as quiet as the nearest competitor, a low cabin altitude of 5,950 feet and more standard features than all other competitors in this segment.

click to visit Baker Aviation | HOT STOP 'L'


What can the private aviation industry learn from Thomas Cook’s demise?

By Kazi Rahman, CEO of Firnas Airways (Now Firnas Private).

  Kazi Rahman

This past week Thomas Cook ceased to exist after 178 years of operations. It’s not the first time a major player declares in bankruptcy and, in fact, without going any further, in the past week alone three other European airlines grounded all flights due economic inconsistencies: French Aigle Azur and XL Airways and Slovenian Adria Airways.

We live in a shared economy where consumer habits are very different from 50 years ago, when travel packages and agents ruled the holiday market. Today, consumers seek to tailor their own holiday, especially flights. There are many variables that play into Thomas Cook’s demise, don ́t get me wrong, from low consumer confidence due to Brexit, dropping value of the British pound and high Fuel prices, but none as important as the lack of awareness or resistance to change. Why amend a model that has been successful for almost two centuries, right?

Furthermore, new generations are playing a key role in how companies need to market their services and communicate their core values. The millennial generation should ring a bell. Moved by new experiences rather than tradition, and acquiring services solely through digital means, this growing group of young adults with financial capacity does not plan their next flight or holiday through a travel agent. Those days are long gone. A big miss by Thomas Cook.


click to visit Deluxe Catering

Morristown, New Jersey:

Lynx enters New York metropolitan area market with Morristown FBO acquisition

Lynx FBO Network, a portfolio company of The Sterling Group, has acquired the assets of FTC FBO and will now operate as the second full-service FBO at the Morristown Airport (MMU) in Morristown, New Jersey. The acquisition marks Lynx's eighth FBO location.

"We are excited to enter the New York metropolitan area and believe this expansion into the largest general aviation market in the United States is a perfect complement to our growing network of FBOs. We look forward to working with DM Airports, LTD., the town of Morristown and the local team to develop a safe, customer-centric FBO that operators in the region have come to expect," said Matt DeLellis, Chief Financial Officer with Lynx.


click to visit Air BP.


Bro Tathan to attract business, air and innovation to Wales

Ken Skates AM, Welsh Government Minister for Economy and Transport, has officially launched Bro Tathan - a business park in the Vale of Glamorgan offering a ready-to-use commercial airfield on site, operated by Cardiff Airport.

The site has already attracted global car icon Aston Martin, and Bro Tathan will ultimately become the company’s ‘Home of Electrification’ when the planned BEV models enter production.

Bro Tathan offers a ready-to-use commercial airfield on site, operated by Cardiff Airport.

Bro Tathan offers a ready-to-use commercial airfield on site, operated by Cardiff Airport.

Many of the world’s primary aerospace businesses operate in the local area, including British Airways, Airbus, GE, and Nordam. Bro Tathan also currently hosts a HM Coastguard search and rescue (SAR) helicopter base, operated by Bristow Helicopters, providing vital life-saving support to fishing and other marine industries, as well as to land-based incidents including mountain rescue, missing persons and medical emergencies.

click to visit Voluxis.

click to visit Krimson Aviation


Business aviation boosted at MEBAA show

The third edition of MEBAA Show Morocco had a successful outing at Marrakech Menara Airport (September 22-23).

The event was officially opened by HE Mr. Mohammed Sajid, Morocco's Minister of Tourism, Air Transport, Crafts and Social Economy, who toured some of the exhibitor stands with Ali Alnaqbi, Founding & Executive Chairman of the Middle East & North Africa Business Aviation Association (MEBAA) and Zouhair El Aoufir, CEO of Office National des Aeroports (ONDA).

Business aviation boosted at MEBAA show

Due to its strategic location between Europe, the Middle East, and the rest of Africa, Morocco is seeing an increasing amount of business jet movements. The industry also benefits from government support, actively targeting and attracting the aerospace and business aviation industry through its Vision 2020. In addition, a new business airport will open in the country within the next few years.

ONDA reports that the country’s airports manage 50% of North Africa’s business jet movements. 1,200 business aircraft are expected to make 175,000 individual aircraft movements by 2020 in MENA, demonstrating growth opportunities across the whole supply chain.

click to visit AviationManuals


UAS CEO Omar Hosari to take on Kilimanjaro for aviation sustainability

Kilimanjaro quest will raise funds for IBAC education program.

UAS Co-Owner/Founder and CEO Omar Hosari’s commitment to climb Africa’s tallest mountain, Mount Kilimanjaro, this month is far more than a personal goal.

Setting out on October 5th from Tanzania, Mr. Hosari is pledging to donate one US dollar for every meter of the 20,000 ft. (6,096 meter) mountain climbed towards IBAC’s aviation sustainability awareness and education programs.

The first workshop is scheduled to take place during ABACE 2020, in collaboration with the Asian Business Aviation Association (AsBAA) where Mr. Hosari is also a Board member.

  Omar Hosari at Everest Base Camp last year.
Omar Hosari at Everest Base Camp last year.

“Our industry has a responsibility to find solutions which will ensure longevity for the sector, but even more importantly, to contribute to protect the planet’s future,” Mr Hosari said. “Aviation, especially business aviation, where our company has been active for two decades, is regularly criticised for its carbon footprint.

“Being able to play a small part by dedicating this climb to aviation sustainability and help demonstrate the leading role we all play as stakeholders in business aviation is my privilege."

click to visit BOSE Aviation

Wichita, Kansas:

New book celebrates Wichita as the Air Capital

Kansas aviatrix Amelia Earhart once famously said, “The most effective way to do it, is to do it.” Greteman Group, a Kansas-based agency specializing in aviation marketing, recently took that advice to heart.

“We’re publishing the history of the Air Capital - a daunting but delightful project,” says Sonia Greteman, agency president and creative director. “Telling these stories has made us fall in love with our city and industry all over again.”

Wichita: Where Aviation Took Wing is based on creative the agency developed for a large-scale history display at Wichita Eisenhower National Airport.

The new aviation-themed terminal opened in 2015 and drew raves. Greteman Group worked with area manufacturers and suppliers to update the content for the book.

  Sonia Greteman
Sonia Greteman

“When you’re flying through the airport, you only have so much time to interact with the display,” says Greteman. “The book lets you hold these stories in your hand - and be struck all over again by the sheer audaciousness of our becoming Air Capital of the World.”


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click to visit Flying Colours Corp.


The WINGX Report:

September activity shows more erosion in the small and mid-cabin market

There were 80,113 business aviation departures in Europe during September 2019 according to WINGX`s latest monthly Business Aviation Monitor published today.

This figure is slightly up on August, but 2% down YOY, with a 2.3% decline in business jet sectors - especially in Private sectors. Three quarters of the way through 2019, market activity is down by 2%.

There was some growth in flight activity in France, but big YOY drops in departures from Germany and Spain. Flight activity was well up out of Greece. YTD 2019, the market is flat in the top market - France - and declining most in Germany.


Small and Mid activity slipped by 3% this month, with sizeable declines in Germany and also Austria. There was some growth in the UK for business jets. In France the growth came in turboprop flights. Large jet activity was down 1% this month.

Charter activity saw robust growth in France, Greece and Norway, and 2% growth in the UK.

Charters in Germany fell 5%. Private flights up >35% in Greece, but down by 12% in Spain.


click to visit Six West

United Kingdom:

ExecuJet seeks new UK FBO to support European expansion

ExecuJet, part of the Luxaviation Group, is intending to launch an enlarged UK FBO at a new location after deciding to exit Cambridge Airport, where landlord Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group intends to bring FBO services in-house.

The planned expansion follows significant growth for ExecuJet in Europe, which has seen nine new aircraft join its fleet in as many months.

Niclas von Planta

Niclas von Planta

Niclas von Planta, Vice President, ExecuJet Europe, says: “After nearly eight successful years of operations in Cambridge, the time is right to seek a new facility with extended capabilities. Earlier this year, operating hours were reduced at Cambridge Airport, with no flights at weekends.

"With the considerable growth ExecuJet has been experiencing in Europe, we have decided to seek new premises that will better serve our client base."


click to visit London Biggin Hill Aiport

Tastefully Yours.

Paula Kraft

Paula Kraft, founder of Atlanta's Tastefully Yours Catering and the DaVinci Inflight Training Institute in Fort Lauderdale.

Pass the Cheese, Please

Cheese is a precious living organism. It is deliciously edible, beautiful, and totally natural.

Cheese has an incredible range of colors, textures, aromas, and tastes, and I believe the love that goes into making it shows through every single piece.

It is an art form. Imagine seeing that perfectly ripe piece of camembert oozing from the rind, just begging to be eaten? Since I am very fortunate not to be lactose intolerant, cheese plays a major role in my diet!

cheese and grapes

Cheese trays are one of the biggest sellers in aviation catering. Why it is such a huge seller is easy to understand.

Most everyone likes some kind of cheese. It is safe; it can be safely held out of refrigeration for short periods of time.

Various textures and densities of cheese are available to stimulate your high altitude taste sensations. it can be used for everything from a pre-board snack, to an appetizer, a snack plate, to a meal and even dessert.

It is the perfect food to order and have on board. But, and yes there is a ‘but’ about cheese trays served all over the world. Do those of us who are arranging the cheese platters and those of you ordering the cheese trays, really understand cheese?


click to visit DaVinci Inflight Training Institute

Vienna, Austria:

Industry calls on EU and national legislators to prioritise the creation of inclusive aviation strategies

The European Business Aviation Association (EBAA), jointly with the Austrian Business Aviation Association (ABAA), has called on European and national legislative and regulatory authorities to engage in a constructive dialogue with the industry, to design inclusive and ambitious aviation policies for all airspace stakeholders.

During a forum held on Thursday (26th September) at Palais Coburg in Vienna, entitled “Austrian Competitiveness: What Role for Business Aviation?”, EU and national officials together with industry highlighted the significant contribution business aviation makes to the European economy:

  • 87 billion euros economic output;
  • 374,000 direct and indirect jobs;
  • A based fleet: 3,700 aircraft;
  • 8% of European traffic;
  • 70 medical flights per day.


PETS Approved


New security equipment at FBO RIGA fast-tracks passenger screening

FBO RIGA business aviation center at Riga International Airport, has installed Liquid Explosive Detection (LED) and Explosive Trace Detection (ETD) security equipment for preflight screening of baggage, hold luggage and personal belongings of passengers in accordance with new EU Regulations.

The installation will release the company from previously obligatory alternative security measures for baggage screening which required passengers’ personal attendance. FBO RIGA is the first and the only FBO in Latvia equipped with these detectors.


“The quality of services and the ability to find a fast track to getting any customer’s issue resolved are the signature features of FBO RIGA," said Roman Starkov, co-owner of FBO RIGA.

"We are investing a lot in our infrastructure in order to provide customers with the best ground handling services. The installation of this modern security equipment will make the preflight inspection procedures faster and more comfortable for passengers.”

Previously the FBO had to request a special permit for alternative security measures for preflight screening of passengers and baggage. It is now able to provide the screening without the passengers' attendance.


click to visit London Oxford Airport

The Bahamas:

ACS uses empty aircraft to fly in additional aid to the Bahamas

Air Charter Service’s Miami office recently filled up an empty passenger aircraft, on its way to perform an evacuation flight, with key supplies that the company had purchased to help those in need following Hurricane Dorian.

Along with several evacuation flights on both private jets and larger aircraft, as well as relief goods charters that the company had arranged, ACS wanted to donate some of their own aid to the victims in the Bahamas.

The company flew the cargo into the islands on an empty leg of a passenger flight with hundreds of kilos of supplies for the Bahamians.

ACS uses empty aircraft to fly in additional aid to the Bahamas

Jordan Hinsch, Private Jets Manager of ACS Miami, said: “Myself and a colleague flew down to Great Harbour Cay on the KingAir 100.

"As a company we donate a lot of money to charity, and we arrange so many flights to disaster-hit regions, but always with other people’s cargo – so we just thought that we should be more hands-on this time."


click to visit Global FBO Consult.

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And Finally

ACJ launches new watch with Richard Mille

Airbus Corporate Jets (ACJ) and Richard Mille have launched a new travel-watch, inspired by and adapted to, exclusive journeys on an Airbus corporate jet. Called the RM 62-01 Tourbillon Vibrating Alarm ACJ, the new watch’s innovative features include a discreet alarm that alerts the wearer through vibrations that only they can feel.

The watch is a true creation of the best of both ACJ and Richard Mille. It encapsulates the pioneering, proven and industry-leading expertise from two companies, known for delivering the highest standards and most exclusive customer experiences in their industries. An evolution of an earlier watch , it continues a partnership begun in 2016.

The announcement was made alongside a 1/20th scale model of the ACJ320neo featuring a Melody cabin in unique Richard Mille livery, highlighting the link between the companies.

“Our partnership is built on a shared passion for new technology and innovation that pushes the boundaries. We always aim to offer unique experiences to our clients, which are sometimes the same,” says ACJ President Benoit Defforge.

“Airbus corporate jets are instruments of beauty, precision and utility, just like our watches, and we both strive to create products that go beyond delivering practicality to provide elegance, exclusivity and eternal value,“ adds Richard Mille Founder and CEO Richard Mille.

As with the previous watch collaboration, sketches of the new design were initially created by ACJ Head of Creative Design, Sylvain Mariat, with the watch being turned into reality by a team at Richard Mille, including Salvador Arbona, Technical Director for Movements.

The face of the new watch comprises titanium/Carbon TPT that has been machined to represent the shape of an aircraft window, revealing different layers that echo the grain of the exotic wood typically found in corporate jet cabins. The crown-winder features engine fan-blades, while the sides of the watch are reminiscent of intricate, sculpted, metal aircraft-structure, as are miniature torque-set screws.

Skeletonisation - a hallmark of Richard Mille watches - reveals the sophistication of the movement inside - visible through the transparent front and back.

In bringing together the worlds of aviation and horology, the watch embodies the superlative engineering and shared values of both, and is available through Richard Mille in a limited edition of just 30 pieces.

ACJ launches new watch with Richard Mille

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