aircraft management

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    3 Qualities to Look for in an Aircraft Manager see more

    NAFA member, Clay Lacy Aviation, recommends what you should look for when hiring an aircraft manager.

    Private jet ownership is complex in nature, as an aircraft asset requires daily management oversight. From operations, scheduling, crewing, maintenance, hangaring, and more— a private jet must be managed efficiently and effectively so that a private jet owner may experience the full benefits of ownership. The private jet experience— from pre-purchase to long-term ownership— is best placed in the care of a reputable and specialized aviation team. One component of owning a private jet is deciding who and how the aircraft asset will be managed.

    With many aircraft management companies and aircraft managers to choose from, how does an aircraft owner make the best management decision for their goals and needs? What character traits differentiate a good aircraft manager from a great one? Here are three characteristics to look for when selecting an aircraft manager.

    A masterful listener

    As the point of contact for the aircraft owner and the individuals on the aircraft management team, the best aircraft managers have mastered the art of listening and utilize the skill continually. Effective communication is essential to the aircraft manager’s role but equally important is the necessity for an aircraft manager to be a masterful listener. Aircraft managers must listen to both what is being said by an aircraft owner and what is left unsaid. Many individuals are first-time aircraft owners and do not know what questions to ask or what to anticipate with ownership. This is where a skilled aircraft manager can step in. Not only can an aircraft manager listen, but an experienced professional will be able to ask pertinent and timely questions to assist in creating a beneficial ownership experience.

    A conscientious professional

    Beyond a standard level of professionalism, the best aircraft managers are honest, authentic, and emotionally intelligent. They communicate with an aircraft owner the important points while maintaining the ‘ease of ownership;’ a major benefit to working with an aircraft management company. Aircraft managers— who are excellent in their field— have a proven ability to connect and build trust between teams and clients. They not only communicate what they are going to do for a client but follow through with timely action. Additionally, the best aircraft managers can step into the aircraft owner’s shoes and understand the needs and wants of the owner; making decisions benefit the client time and time again.

    Advocates for the client

    The best aircraft managers advocate and operate with an aircraft owner’s best interest at the forefront of their decision-making and problem-solving. An aircraft manager is a private jet owner’s eyes and ears when it comes to the aircraft asset. So, without question an aircraft manager must do what is right by his or her client. In turn, the aircraft owner must have complete trust that the aircraft manager will make the best decisions regarding the aircraft operation.

    Regardless of what aircraft management company an aircraft manager is employed with, the aircraft owner should believe— through action and solutions offered— that the aircraft manager is assisting the owner at every turn. Advocating for a client includes a foundation of knowledge, experience, and strong industry relationships, which allow for more efficient and practical solutions to be discovered.

    Discover the benefits of aircraft management. Request a management proposal.

    This article was originally published by Clay Lacy Aviation on their Insights Blog.

     

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Clay Lacy Aviation Joins National Aircraft Finance Association see more

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Feb. 4, 2019 – National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that Clay Lacy Aviation has recently joined its professional network of aviation lenders. “NAFA members proudly finance - support or enable the financing of - general and business aviation aircraft throughout the world, and we’re happy to add Clay Lacy to our association,” said Ford von Weise, President of NAFA.

    Founded in 1968 by an aviation legend and industry pioneer,Clay Lacy Aviation is considered one of the world’s most experienced operator of private jets. For the past 50 years the company has managed, maintained and globally operated jet aircraft from every major manufacturer- serving business and world leaders, Fortune 500 companies, government agencies, professional athletes, sports franchises, celebrities and dignitaries. 

    “NAFA brings together talented leaders from across the business aviation industry and we are delighted to support and participate in their efforts,”said Scott Cutshall, VP Brand Development with Clay Lacy.

    Clay Lacy Aviation is a trusted partner for aircraft management, charter, maintenance, avionics, interiors and FBO services. The company has aircraft operations and regional offices across the U.S., including a full-service FBO at Van Nuys Airport in Los Angeles, and aircraft maintenance centers in Los Angeles, San Diego, and Oxford, Connecticut. They are also the authorized dealer for the Quest Kodiak 100 Series II in the Northeastern U.S. 

     

     Waterbury-Oxford Airport, Oxford, CT

     

    The company prides itself on having the resources of a large organization, with the agility, responsiveness and personal attention of a small, private flight department. Their highly knowledgeable team of aviation professionals manages every facet of their clients’aircraft- whether one aircraft or a fleet, a light jet or an airliner- anticipating needs, reducing costs and protecting assets.

    Much like NAFA, Clay Lacy Aviation is dedicated to the continuous improvement of safety, service and value throughout the industry.Clay Lacy and NAFA foster highly trained, knowledgeable and passionate aviation professionals worldwide with their expanding networks of experienced and trusted businesses. 

    For more information about Clay Lacy Aviation, visit claylacy.com.  

     

    Van Nuys Airport, Los Angeles, CA

     

    About NAFA: 

    The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting the general welfare of individuals and organizations providing aircraft financing and loans secured by aircraft; to improving the industry's service to the public; and to providing our members with a forum for education and the sharing of information and knowledge to encourage the financing, leasing and insuring of general aviation aircraft. For more information about NAFA, visit www.NAFA.aero.

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Blue Ridge Jet Management Joins National Aircraft Finance Association see more

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - Jan. 16, 2019 - National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that Blue Ridge Jet Management has recently joined its professional network of aviation lenders. “NAFA members proudly finance - support or enable the financing of - general and business aviation aircraft throughout the world, and we’re happy to add Blue Ridge to our association,” said Ford von Weise, President of NAFA.

    Blue Ridge Jet Management is a multi-faceted private aviation company offering services designed to evolve with the needs of their customers, including aircraft management, charter brokerage, aircraft sales and acquisitions, business aviation consulting and flight crew services.  Their team encompasses over 100 years of aviation experience and supports their clients’ private aviation needs throughout the various phases of growth and development.  

    Many of their clients start with charter, transition through jet cards or a fractional share program and ultimately end up owning an aircraft.  The goal at Blue Ridge Jet Management is to foster the client relationship by finding the right solution for every need, now and in the future. 

    “Blue Ridge Jet Management shares the commitment of the National Aircraft Finance Association to our mutual clients who require the expertise of a team of professional partners to receive the best guidance, advice and counsel regarding the complex process of aircraft acquisitions, financing, operations and management.  It is an honor to be associated with NAFA and its Members,” stated Greg Kinsella, Co-founder of Blue Ridge.

    Much like NAFA, Blue Ridge Jet Management promotes the highest standards of customer service in private aviation. Blue Ridge and NAFA contribute greatly to the aviation industry as committed partners with their clients. 

    For more information about Blue Ridge Jet Management, visit www.blueridgejet.com.  

    About NAFA: 

    The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting the general welfare of individuals and organizations providing aircraft financing and loans secured by aircraft; to improving the industry's service to the public; and to providing our members with a forum for education and the sharing of information and knowledge to encourage the financing, leasing and insuring of general aviation aircraft. For more information about NAFA, visit www.NAFA.aero

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Vinci Aeronautica Joins National Aircraft Finance Association see more

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - Feb. 13, 2018 - National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that Vinci Aeronatucia has recently joined its professional network of aviation lenders. “NAFA members proudly finance - support or enable the financing of - general and business aviation aircraft throughout the world, and we’re happy to add Vinci to our association,” said Ford von Weise, President of NAFA.

    Vinci Aeronautica specialists have more than 20 years of experience in the aviation industry, providing aircraft recurrent, pre-buy, redelivery and compliance inspections services for the finance and legal sectors. The company has an extensive background in maintenance management, operations, finance, regulatory compliance and sales/purchases of aircraft. The Vinci team works with the Civil Aviation Authority and several air operators to provide focused and tailored services to their valued clients. 

    With experienced inspectors, Vinci has carried out more than 2000 inspections ofa wide variety of aircraft – both fixed and rotary wings– and assisted numerous air companies – both large and small. The company has also trained and worked with many authorities worldwide, gaining significant knowledge and expertise with different compliance systems, including EASA and FAA systems.

    Vinci Aeronautica prides itself on having a global reach while providing local knowledge. Their inspectors and audit teams are fluent in English, Spanish, Portuguese and French, forming the biggest dedicated aircraft inspection company in Latin America. They are a team of highly specialized professionals with formal training on aviation rulemaking and a strong technical background. Along with the company’s proprietary asset management system, Vinci has the experience, knowledge and technology to take the utmost care of their clients’ assets.

    Much like NAFA, Vinci Aeronautica is committed to providing the highest level of service in the aviation industry. Vinci and NAFA establish strong business relationships worldwide, fostering a network of knowledgeable aviation professionals.

    For more information about Vinci Aeronautica, visit vinciaero.com.  

    About NAFA: 

    The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting the general welfare of individuals and organizations providing aircraft financing and loans secured by aircraft; to improving the industry's service to the public; and to providing our members with a forum for education and the sharing of information and knowledge to encourage the financing, leasing and insuring of general aviation aircraft. For more information about NAFA, visit www.NAFA.aero.

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Size Matters – And So Do Your Needs - Regional or National Aircraft Management Company: Your Call see more

    NAFA member, Thomas Mitchell, Executive Vice President of Essex Aviation, discusses options to consider when choosing an aircraft management company.

    When acquiring your first or subsequent aircraft, one of your primary decisions will be how you want your aircraft to be operated. Have you considered the requirements for establishing your own flight department, and are you prepared to undertake them? If not, you have the choice to retain a professional management company to manage your aircraft for you.

    How will you select this management company? Options to consider are:

    • Nationally known companies that may be either a division of a large public corporation or privately held;
    • Mid-sized companies, often formed to complement their FBO or aircraft sales business; and
    • Smaller, usually regionally based, companies which have organized a few professional aviation individuals to support a limited number of aircraft on behalf of a small group of owners.

    Within each category are differences in the breadth and width of resources offered, and several factors should be considered and evaluated to determine which type of organization best meets your needs.

    Evaluating Your Choices

    What programs and services do each offer? What are the key operational, maintenance, crew management, and administrative factors you should understand while making this decision? As you begin your search, you’ll want to find out:

    • How long has the company been in business?
    • Who owns and manages its day-to-day operations, and what is their background and experience in the industry?
    • If chartering your aircraft is of interest, does it have the necessary government-issued certificate, giving legal authority to generate outside revenue via third-party charter? (See “Spotlighting Charter Cheaters,” Business Aviation Advisor July/August 2018)
    • Has it satisfied safety audits by an independent third party such as ArgusWyvern, or the Air Charter Safety Foundation?
    • Will maintenance be outsourced, or does the management company have its own in-house capability, and will it provide detailed documentation of work performed?
    • Are fleet operator discounts made available to you for insurance, fuel, training, and maintenance?
    • What are the company’s crew hiring and training standards, and are these be acceptable to you?

    In addition, the decision to use a national or regional management company may be informed by where you intend to hangar your aircraft. Especially for charter purposes, some companies will suggest basing your aircraft at an airport known for higher charter demand, and ferrying the aircraft to you for your own travel or for maintenance. Others will manage your aircraft based at any airport you choose that offers sufficient runway and basic support services.

    What Do You Need Your Management Company to Do for You?

    Be sure to allow sufficient time to review a range of aircraft management companies and compare their differences. A useful first step is to outline and prioritize your goals in order to define, at least in theory, what would make an ideal relationship.

    Consider:

    • Your travel profile. Can the management company you are considering accommodate the details of how you normally travel? Are they experienced with international flying? Can they respond to short notice demands, and do they have the capability to make contingency travel plans when needed? (See “Global Reach,” Business Aviation Advisor May/June 2018)
    • Is having occasional access to additional aircraft important to you and can that need be accommodated by the prospective company?
    • Is the management company experienced with your particular aircraft’s sophistication, size, and/or model?
    • If you normally require immediate or 24/7 support, are they able to provide it?
    • Does the offered structure pool pilots, or will pilots be dedicated to you and your aircraft?
    • Will the management company accommodate a hands-on approach if that is what you want? For example, would you be able to have direct involvement with the hiring of and interactions with pilots, maintenance personnel, or administrative support?
    • Do you plan to make your aircraft available for charter when you are not flying? If so, what are your revenue requirements?

    The Differences Between Charter and Owner Use

    While management companies provide services for both, the FAA doesn't regulate or really even recognize aircraft management companies – large or small, regional or national – unless your aircraft is operated under a Federal Aviation Regulation (FAR) Part 135 charter certificate. The FAA does recognize operational control of flights, which lies either with the management company when flying charter, or with the aircraft owner during non-charter flights.

    Therefore, whether entrusting your aircraft to an internal or third-party Part 135 charter management company, significant due diligence is highly recommended, and it is prudent to engage the assistance of an independent and knowledgeable industry resource or advisor.

    And, if chartering your aircraft to third parties to generate revenue is a primary objective, the region in which your aircraft is based and the type of aircraft you own may be uniquely attractive to both large and small management companies. Those factors should be discussion items when comparing charter projections of management companies.

    Advantages and Limitations

    While a larger charter provider may have a greater capability to market your aircraft for maximum utilization, it may have policies that, while effective and necessary to manage a large Part 135 fleet, may feel burdensome if you are an owner with few requirements.

    A large, reputable national aircraft management company often will be better equipped to effectively support the details associated with unusual flight destinations, during all times of the day or night, as well as ground handling and even security details.

    A larger company may have the purchasing power to negotiate substantial discounts, typically passing them along to you. However, the annual management fees charged by a larger company may be somewhat higher than those of a smaller regional company.

    The ability to identify your specific values and needs will have a significant impact on your selection process. As you narrow your choices, it is highly recommended that each prospective management company respond to a questionnaire which defines your specific operational and financial requirements, and also provides a detailed pro forma budget for your aircraft. This “Request for Proposal” exercise often highlights strengths as well as possible deficiencies in a prospective management company, and can prove to be an effective tool in your evaluation and final selection process.

    And as you make your final selection, be sure to choose a company that can meet not only your current, but also your future, needs. For example, when you sell this aircraft and purchase another, will this company have the flexibility and capability to adapt to a newer or different make and model, or must you begin the management company selection process anew?

    Whichever company you choose, you can and should expect it to partner with you to meet your travel needs, your budget, and any required charter revenue.

    This article was originally published in Business Aviation Advisor on July 11, 2018.