If you have just picked up this summer 2023 edition of Executive & VIP Aviation International in the hall at the European Business Aviation Conference & Exhibition, then please use it as an excuse to sit for a moment – especially if you’re already regretting your footwear choice – and flick through our carefully curated story selection.
Once again, we’ve spoken to experts and executives from across the industry, on subjects including jets, helicopters, FBOs, completions and maintenance. From Bombardier’s Thomas Fissellier, Director Pre-owned aircraft acquisition and sales support, we learn about the OEM’s unique Certified Pre-Owned Aircraft offer. It provides owners with the very best pre-owned experience, delivering fully upgraded and refurbished aircraft handpicked and reworked by Bombardier’s expert team.
Keen to learn more about the impressive new ACH160 helicopter, we spoke with Head of Airbus Corporate Helicopters Frederic Lemos, who was typically enthusiastic about the organisation’s products. And we took the opportunity to sample the best of Leonardo and Castle Air, flying London Biggin Hill’s Helishuttle into the City.
By coincidence also based at Biggin Hill, Oriens Aviation is expanding its Pilatus expertise to include an AOC, adding operations to its maintenance and distribution activities. Another well-known maintenance provider, Fokker Techniek is also expert in cabin completion and refurbishment. With its first ACJ330 in hand, Boaz Bal, Sales Director for VIP Completions, provides insight into the company’s proud heritage and future ambition.
Considering ground services, industry veteran and Director General Aviation and Business Development at Aéroports de la Côte d’Azur, Jean-François Guitard explains how the company’s Sky Valet brand expanded into the Sky Valet Connect franchise, which is announcing new locations during the EBACE show. Meanwhile, EVA also spoke with Bestfly co-founder and CEO Nuno Pereira, and Dawit Lemma, CEO at Krimson Aviation, about their BFK Aviation joint venture, which is starting out in Guyana and ultimately has plans for FBOs and other support capability.
Safety is invariably cited as a cornerstone of business and VIP aviation. As Glen Smith, Accountable Manager, Flight Operations at Oriens Aviation explains, achieving safety requires a proactive approach and hard work to maintain. When it comes to safety in the cabin, especially if the unthinkable – a fire or emergency landing – should happen, then we’d surely all like to think that the cabin attendants looking after us are equipped with the tools they need to keep us as safe as possible. To find out a little more about those tools and how they are furnished, we spoke with executives at several leading training providers, experiencing full motion simulation along the way.
And how else could a British editor conclude his ramblings in the summer edition of a UK-based magazine than with a mention of the coronation of His Majesty King Charles III and the Queen Consort? Weather permitting, there will have been a military flypast over Buckingham Palace and, if the day’s events reflected the recent flypast rehearsal, the eagle-eyed among you may well have spotted a Falcon 900 business jet among the helicopters, fighters, transports and tankers. Business and VIP aviation it seems, really does get everywhere.