aviation industry

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Congress Introduces Legislation for a National Aviation Center see more

    NAFA member, AOPA, shares the latest on legislation for a national aviation center.

    Known as the National Center for the Advancement of Aviation (NCAA), the bill has already garnered overwhelming support from AOPA and organizations representing all segments of aviation across the country.

    The proposal will open the door for all stakeholders to come together in support of a long-overdue, national industry forum. It will help ensure science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM)-based aviation curriculum reaches the 25,000-plus high schools across the country, assist in apprenticeships, and help military veterans and others transition to good paying technical jobs in the aviation industry.

    The NCAA would be a private entity and no general fund taxpayer dollars would be used to support it. The legislation calls for funding the initiative by using a small percentage of the interest that is accrued annually on the taxes and fees collected from users and deposited into the aviation trust fund. Today, users of our aviation system pay for nearly all the costs associated with the operations of the FAA including air traffic control modernization. Moreover, the proposed center would be prohibited from involvement in any political or legislative activity.

    Spearheaded by U.S. Sens. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) and Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), the NCAA would focus on four key initiatives: aviation workforce development, including the facilitation of STEM-based aviation curriculum for high school students; a repository for aviation research; safety and economic data analysis; and the fostering of needed collaboration among the entire aviation industry.

    “The widespread support for this center is very encouraging. This center would do more to promote needed cooperation in the aviation community including efforts to address the workforce challenges our industry is facing now and into the future. Whether it be pilots starting in general aviation, military or commercial pilots, technicians, maintenance workers, or others, we need to ensure that our industry remains competitive and can meet these challenges,” said AOPA President Mark Baker. “AOPA is proud to work alongside allies in Congress and respected aviation leaders to make this center a reality.” 

    Demand for air travel, a sizeable cohort of commercial pilots nearing the mandated retirement age, and the high cost of training have all led to a shortage of qualified professionals in the industry. Boeing’s 2019 Pilot and Technician Outlook predicts the need for 804,000 new civil aviation pilots, 769,000 new maintenance technicians, and 914,000 new cabin crew over the next 20 years to fly and maintain the global aircraft fleet. In North America alone, Boeing suggests 212,000 new pilots and 193,000 new technicians will be needed over the next two decades.

    According to the Aeronautical Repair Station Association the technician shortage is costing the U.S. aviation maintenance industry an estimated $118 million per month ($1.421 billion per year) in lost economic opportunity. Additionally, the Aviation Technician Education Council predicts that the mechanic population will decrease 5 percent in the next 15 years. New entrants make up just 2 percent of the technician workforce annually, while 30 percent is at or near retirement age.

    The U.S. Air Force is short thousands of fighter pilots but has taken significant steps to reduce that gap and seek initiatives to retain more airmen. Using 3D virtual reality, the Air Force is looking to speed up pilot training—a technique that could also benefit the civilian pilot training sector. The NCAA would be an avenue for the Air Force to share its experience, allowing for cross-industry collaboration and potentially reducing the cost of civilian flight training.

    The future of the entire aviation ecosystem depends on effective training, resources, and innovative ideas, which can be accomplished through the establishment of the NCAA. 

    Additionally, this center would allow the FAA to focus on safety and certification while the industry invests in the collaboration of promoting aviation through education, training, research, and awareness of the many job opportunities in the aviation industry.

    This article was originally published by AOPA on February 27, 2020.

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Bolen Sternly Questions CNBC’s Recent Mischaracterization of Business Aviation see more

    NAFA member, NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen responded strongly this week to a recent CNBC article about the general aviation community’s collective request for inclusion in a congressional COVID-19 relief package, saying the network’s coverage was based on a “pre-determined narrative” that cast the industry with a negative brush, while ignoring the reality of its pressing economic challenges.

    Bolen cited the pandemic’s impact on business aviation operations large and small, from the sweeping furloughs and layoffs at OEMs, maintenance facilities and other aviation businesses, to dwindling traffic at business aviation airports.

    Bolen also emphasized the industry’s efforts to support relief efforts against the pandemic, citing a family-owned maintenance company that has converted some of its operations over to production of protective face masks for humanitarian purposes.

    “All of this points to the larger picture missed in your report: As the U.S. economy moves rapidly from slowdown to shutdown, this critical industry, like countless others, is in need of support,” Bolen wrote. “By settling for sizzle over substance in a time of national crisis, CNBC is not only misinforming readers, but also attempting to smear a vital industry with a long history of serving the nation, and thousands of communities in times of need.”

    Review the CNBC article.

    This article was originally published by NBAA on March 26, 2020.

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Sky Allies Capital Joins National Aircraft Finance Association see more


    EDGEWATER, Md. – Nov. 13, 2019 – National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that Sky Allies Capital has recently joined its professional network of aviation lenders. 

    “NAFA members form a network of aviation finance services who diligently and competently operate with integrity and objectivity throughout the world. We’re excited to welcome Sky Allies to our growing organization as we head to our 50th anniversary,” said Jim Blessing, president of NAFA.

    Sky Allies is a group of finance and aviation industry professionals – financing and leasing airplanes, helicopters, flight simulators and other aviation or industrial and technological equipment. The company specializes in credit challenged borrowers and other abnormal deal opportunities. They also offer special hourly simulator leasing programs for flight schools.

    The company is privately held and based in Las Vegas, NV. Sky Allies is a member of the American Association of Commercial Finance Brokers and thereby adhere to a Code of Ethics Program as voted on by their broker members. Their principal has 26 years experience in the aviation industry, is a Citation 525 rated pilot, ATP and an airplane owner.

    Much like NAFA, Sky Allies Capital is focused on the financing of aircraft – putting business plans in the air. Sky Allies and NAFA are committed to the highest level of customer service, fostering long lasting business relationships throughout the aviation industry.

    For more information about Sky Allies Capital, visit nafa.aero/companies/sky-allies-capital.

    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 NAFA.aero.


  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    The Air Law Firm Joins National Aircraft Finance Association see more


    EDGEWATER, Md. - January 23, 2019 - National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that The Air Law Firm 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 Air Law to our association,” said Ford von Weise, President of NAFA.

    The Air Law Firm LLP is a boutique aviation law practice providing international legal services to the aviation industry. Their practice model sustains a bespoke and focused service from an agile and responsive team who can react quickly to the changing demands of a business environment. Air Law’s services are partner-led and proactive, with lawyers who are recognized internationally as being experts in their fields. 

    The practice has in-depth knowledge and understanding of the global aviation industry including aircraft finance and leasing, acquisitions and sales, litigation, regulatory advice and aviation insurance.The Air Law Firm’s international lawyers are qualified in various jurisdictions, routinely handling and managing transactional and commercial work, claims and litigation around the world on behalf of a multitude of clients – from individuals to the largest airlines.

    The Air Law Firm understands the cultural aspects and nuances of international business. The group is adept at helping to strategize, finding solutions for clients as business people and legal partners rather than a last resort. They often resolve clients’ disputes privately through mediation and arbitration and provide counsel as a respected and trusted advisor, consistently delivering practical advice and adding real value.

    “We at the Air Law Firm are delighted to join NAFA and look forward to sharing experience, opportunities and information with NAFA members. We are avid supporters of doing everything possible to enhance the experience of buyers and lessees of corporate and private aircraft to ensure seamless and professional transactions,but also with a view to investigating where improvements and innovative products can be discussed. NAFA presents us with an excellent forum for this and we welcome the interaction with other members,” stated Aoife O’Sullivan, Partner at the firm.

    Much like NAFA, The Air Law Firm is passionate about aviation and upholding the highest standards in client service.  Air Lawand NAFA foster strong business relationships and global networks in the aviation industry, with the knowledge and dedication to support continued development.

    For more information about The Air Law Firm, visit www.theairlawfirm.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
    Jack Prewitt & Associates, Inc. Joins National Aircraft Finance Association see more


    EDGEWATER, Md. - Aug. 23, 2019 - National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that Jack Prewitt & Associates, Inc. has recently joined its professional network of aviation lenders.

    “NAFA members form a network of aviation finance services who diligently and competently operate with integrity and objectivity throughout the world. We’re excited to welcome Jack Prewitt to our growing organization as we head to our 50th anniversary,” said Jim Blessing, President of NAFA.

    Jack Prewitt & Associates provides a comprehensive aircraft brokerage and acquisition service developed from extensive knowledge gained over the years of the aircraft markets, allowing them to effectively gauge the needs of their clients. The company prides itself on being an aviation partner with a track record of client success and satisfaction. 

    The company serves their clients by first establishing what the client’s mission is when acquiring an aircraft, then providing up to date insight into the worldwide aviation marketplace. Their team identifies the best aircraft that fits their customers’ mission and negotiates a fair market price, all while guiding them through the purchasing process from “tip to tail”.

    Over the last 40 years, Jack Prewitt & Associates has bought and sold over 1000 aircraft, largely through their extensive, exclusive network of contacts. As an inventory dealer, the company are experienced buyers as well as sellers. Via their leasing subsidiary, AEI, they also own six aircraft, including five large cabin jets, all on long-term lease. The company believes this varied experience sets them apart from the rest of the field.

    Much like NAFA, Jack Prewitt & Associates, Inc. has experience in all facets of aviation and provides accurate market knowledge. Jack Prewitt and NAFA are passionate about the aviation industry and promoting excellence in service.

    For more information about Jack Prewitt & Associates, Inc., visit nafa.aero/companies/jack-prewitt-associates-inc

    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 NAFA.aero.

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Jet Edge Partners Joins National Aircraft Finance Association see more



    EDGEWATER, Md.– September 16, 2019 – National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that Jet Edge Partners has recently joined its professional network of aviation lenders. 

    “NAFA members form a network of aviation finance services who diligently and competently operate with integrity and objectivity throughout the world. We’re excited to welcome Jet Edge to our growing organization as we head to our 50th anniversary,” said Jim Blessing, President of NAFA.

    Jet Edge Partners is a full-service aircraft broker and dealer formed as a division of Jet Edge International. The aircraft sales experts at Jet Edge work to understand the mission profiles, goals, and operational budget of their clientele to ensure they are connected with the best possible aircraft to meet their individual needs. 

    The company’s team is connected in real time to the movements in the markets and are skilled in projecting future trends in the aviation industry. Throughout their careers, the sales team at Jet Edge Partners have successfully completed aircraft transactions totaling hundreds of millions of dollars. 

    With offices and sales professionals located throughout the United States, the company provides clients with the knowledge and understanding of the market needed in order to purchase or sell an aircraft with confidence and unmatched customer service. 

    Jet Edge Partners not only transacts aircraft, but alongside Jet Edge International, it operates, owns, and manages one of the largest fleets in the world, providing clients with operational knowledge and resources unmatched in the industry. 

    Much like NAFA, Jet Edge Partners promotes knowledge and understanding of the market for confident and timely transactions. Jet Edge and NAFA are committed to the aviation industry and the highest standards of customer service. 

    For more information about Jet Edge Partners, visit nafa.aero/companies/jet-edge-partners.

    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 NAFA.aero.

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Used Aircraft Maintenance Analysis – July 2019 see more

    NAFA member, Tony Kioussis, President of Asset Insight, shares the July 2019 Used Aircraft Maintenance Analysis.

    How did the Beechcraft King Air 350 (Post-2000) models do? 

    Average Ask Prices for Asset Insight’s tracked fleet increased somewhat in July but values are still below the 12-month average. Asset availability rose to the highest year-to-date figure. Tony Kioussis explores which models were impacted the most…


    Asset Insight’s monthly market analysis covering 96 fixed-wing models and 1,693 aircraft listed for sale was most recently conducted on July 31st, 2019 and marked the fourth consecutive month of asset quality deterioration for the inventory fleet (in this case -0.6%) to post a 12-month worst Quality Rating figure.

    However, the figure did remain within the ‘Very Good’ range even after decreasing from 5.196 to 5.165 on a scale of -2.5 to 10.

    Asset Insight’s tracked fleet’s Maintenance Exposure figure (an aircraft’s accumulated/embedded maintenance expense) followed suit, rising (worsening) 3.9% to an amount only marginally better than the 12-month high (worst) figure.


    July’s Aircraft Value Trends

    The average Ask Price for Asset Insight’s tracked fleet increased 0.9% in July, but only Large Jets were responsible for the Ask Price increase as, following classical supply dynamics, the three groups experiencing an inventory increase registered an Ask Price decrease:

    • Large Jet values posted a 7.3% increase;
    • Medium Jets lost 2.1% in July;
    • Small Jet values decreased 4.2% to post a 12-month low figure; and 
    • Turboprops posted a record-low figure for the group by decreasing 0.9%.


    July’s Fleet for Sale Trends

    The total number of used aircraft listed for sale within Asset Insight’s tracked fleet posted another increase in July, 0.8% (13 units), on top of June’s 27 aircraft increase, raising inventory availability to the highest year-to-date figure.

    • Large Jet inventory, the only one to decrease, fell 1.3% (five units);
    • Medium Jet inventory increased 1.2% (six units) for the second consecutive month;
    • Small Jets posted a 0.4% increase (two units); and
    • Turboprops inventory increased 3.8% (10 units).


    July’s Maintenance Exposure Trends

    Maintenance Exposure (an aircraft’s accumulated/embedded maintenance expense) due to July’s inventory fleet mix rose (worsened) 3.9% to a value only marginally better than the 12-month high (worst) figure, increasing to nearly $1.5m from last month’s $1.4m. Results for each of the four groups were as follows:

    • Large Jet maintenance exposure rose (worsened) 4.0% to a figure marginally better than the group’s 12-month average;
    • Medium Jet exposure rose (worsened) 0.8% to a figure slightly worse than the 12-month average;
    • Small Jets rose (worsened) 0.4% to virtually equal the group’s 12-month average;
    • Turboprops posted the only maintenance exposure decrease (improvement) of 2.1%, but that was only slightly better than last month’s 12-month worst figure.


    July’s ETP Ratio Trend

    As a result of all these changes, the average ETP Ratio figure increased (worsened) to 68.3% from June’s 65.4%, with all four groups contributing to the degradation.

    Why is this information important? The ETP Ratio calculates an aircraft's Maintenance Exposure as it relates to the Ask Price. This is achieved by dividing an aircraft's Maintenance Exposure (the financial liability accrued with respect to future scheduled maintenance events) by the aircraft's Ask Price.

    As the ETP Ratio decreases, the asset's value increases (in relation to the aircraft's price). ‘Days on Market’ analysis has shown that when the ETP Ratio is greater than 40%, a listed aircraft’s Days on the Market (DoM) increase, in many cases by more than 30%.

    How did each group fare during the month of July?

    • Turboprops regained their leadership position by posting the lowest (best) ETP Ratio at 56.9% although, for the second consecutive month, the figure represented this group’s highest (worst) Ratio;
    • Large Jets were next at 58.5%, a substantive worsening over last month’s 52.5%;
    • Small Jets followed at 71.5%, higher than June’s 68.8%;
    • Medium Jets posted 77.3%, equating to the group’s average figure over the past twelve months.

    Excluding models whose ETP Ratio has remained over 200% during the previous two months (considered outliers), following is a breakdown of which individual business jet and turboprop models fared the best and worst during July 2019.


    Asset Insight Most Improved Jet Models - July 2019


    Most Improved Models

    All ‘Most Improved’ models posted a Maintenance Exposure decrease (improvement). Although the Bombardier Challenger 601-3R and Global Express did not experience an Ask Price change the Cessna Citation V 560 had an Ask Price decrease of $24,519. The remaining three models posted the following price increases:

    • Hawker 800A    +$29,558
    • King Air 350 (Post-2000 Models) +$23,143
    • Beechcraft Premier 1A  +$18,686


    Hawker 800A

    After appearing on the ‘Most Deteriorated’ list in June, the model captured top spot on the ‘Most Improved’ list in July through an ETP Ratio improvement exceeding 21%, thanks to a Maintenance Exposure reduction exceeding $114k and a substantial Ask Price increase.

    Three units transacted in July, one was added, and three were withdrawn, leaving 36 listed for sale. Regrettably, nearly 26% of the active fleet remains on the market, and an ETP Ratio approaching 167% is not making the 800A a highly marketable model.

    Still, this aircraft has quite a following and, if a unit’s maintenance status is in better-than-average condition, and if the asset’s engines are enrolled on HCMP, the seller should be able to generate some genuine interest in their aircraft.


    Bombardier Challenger 601-3R

    While this model experienced no sales in July, and no change to posted ask prices, one higher quality aircraft joined the fleet for sale, thereby reducing (improving) Maintenance Exposure by over $445k to earn the model second position on the ‘Most Improved’ list.

    Alas, that’s where the good news ends because, even though only 6.9% of the active fleet is on the market, the model’s average ETP Ratio, at nearly 134%, is unlikely to make acceptable offers magically materialize.


    Cessna Citation V 560

    This model moved from the middle of the ‘Most Deteriorated’ group for June to this position in July. One aircraft transacted during the month, but two were added to the fleet for sale, increasing the inventory total to 28 (11% of the active fleet).

    The Citation V 560 gained its spot on this list by virtue of a Maintenance Exposure decrease approaching $15k, and a respectable Ask Price increase.

    Not surprisingly, its average ETP Ratio will prove troublesome for most sellers. However, owners whose aircraft is enrolled on engine HCMP coverage may fare better relative to offer price, assuming they’re able to identify a willing buyer.


    Beechcraft King Air 350 (Post-2000 Models)

    Generating four transactions in July, and with an ETP Ratio of only 22.6%, most sellers of this model should have little difficulty generating acceptable offers, even though current inventory represents 22.6% of the active fleet.

    This aircraft has a well-deserved following, and its place on this list was caused by a Maintenance Exposure decrease exceeding $213k, along with an Ask Price increase that may, or may not be achievable.


    Bombardier Global Express

    The 18 aircraft listed for sale represent 12.3% of the active fleet, and demand for this model is low at present, with no units transacting in July.

    The aircraft’s appearance on the ‘Most Improved’ list is due a Maintenance Exposure decrease for the listed fleet approaching $417k. But there were no notable price changes and the ETP Ratio is still hovering near 77% placing some sellers on the edge of the 40% Excessive Exposure demarcation point. The opportunity to generate good offers is not stellar for most owners.


    Beechcraft Premier 1A

    Closing out July’s ‘Most Improved’ list is the Premier 1A, which earned its place on this list through a $73k Maintenance Exposure Improvement and an Ask Price Increase. With an ETP Ratio of 44.5% - and considering that most of these aircraft have engine HCMP coverage – the news should be good for most sellers.

    Unfortunately, no units transacted in July and, by virtue of four additions to the fleet during the month, total availability presently stands at 22 units, equating to 14.3% of the active fleet. That much selection and very low demand are not transaction-conducive elements.


    Why was the Gulfstream GV on the 'Most Deteriorated' list for July 2019?


    Most Deteriorated Models

    All models on July’s ‘Most Deteriorated’ list experienced a Maintenance Exposure increase (deterioration). Two assets experienced no price change, the Gulfstream G100 and GV, while the remaining four posted an Ask Price decrease, as follows:

    • Gulfstream GIV  -$67,500
    • Bombardier Learjet 55 -$32,153
    • Dassault Falcon 900B -$1,122,500
    • Beechcraft Premier 1  -$71,950


    Asset Insight Most Deteriorated Jet Models - July 2019


    Gulfstream G100

    The model’s inventory was cut in half when two of the four aircraft listed for sale transacted in July. Demand is below average for the G100, so the change in inventory was surprising.

    What was not surprising was the model’s place on our ‘Most Deteriorated’ list, as it was well-earned, thanks to a Maintenance Exposure increase approaching $533k for the two remaining listings. Even without an Ask Price change, there was little chance for the G100 to miss this list.


    Gulfstream GIV

    The Gulfstream GIV found its way to the position occupied by its younger GIV-SP (MSG) cousin in June. One aircraft transacted in July and two entered inventory to increase Maintenance Exposure by nearly $458k, while the average Ask Price dropped $67.5k.

    The 14 units listed for sale equate to only 8% of the active fleet.  However, with an ETP Ratio of 143%, sellers are likely to find it challenging to negotiate acceptable transaction values, even though these older aircraft continue to have a reasonable following.


    Bombardier Learjet 55

    We registered no trades for this model in July, but one was withdrawn from inventory leaving 14 listings that equate to approximately 13.5% of the active fleet. With an ETP Ratio approaching a figure that only astronomers can interpret, the model is on this list due to a near $75k Maintenance Exposure increase and an Ask Price decrease exceeding $32k.

    None of this is surprising, considering these aircraft are between 32 and 38 years old. What we do find surprising is the aircraft’s ongoing buyer following, considering its age and technology.


    Dassault Falcon 900B

    No trades took place for this model during the month of July, but one aircraft was withdrawn from inventory leaving nine listed for sale, or about 6% of the active fleet.

    The Falcon 900B earned a place on this list for ‘technical reasons’, as an Ask Price decrease exceeding $1.1m is unlikely to keep any asset off the ‘Most Deteriorated’ list. However, this represents another case where statistics do not tell the whole story.

    Only two aircraft had a posted Ask Price in June, and one was withdrawn from the market, dramatically changing the model’s average Ask Price figure – in this case downward.  The $12k change in Maintenance Exposure is fairly benign for the Falcon 900B’s size, and the model’s 52.7% ETP Ratio makes many of the available units quite marketable.

    This is another case where statistics might point owners and buyers down a blind alley if they lack the supporting information.


    Beechcraft Premier 1

    Unlike the story for its younger brother, the Premier 1A (on July’s ‘Most Improved’ list), the Premier 1’s story is not as positive… but neither is it grim. One aircraft transacted in July, three were withdrawn from inventory, and two were added to the pool. When July ran out of days, we found 17 aircraft still listed for sale, or approximately 14.2% of the active fleet.

    The changes to the fleet mix led to a Maintenance Exposure increase exceeding $114k and an Ask Price decrease approaching $72k, neither statistic aiding transaction-structuring opportunities.

    However, considering these assets range in age between 14 and 18 years, and that the HCMP-adjusted ETP Ratio for many aircraft will be closer to the 40% excessive exposure demarcation point, many sellers have reason to be confident of achieving a reasonable transaction value. It should also be noted that this aircraft’s demand exceeds that of the Premier 1A. Not by much, but every little helps.


    Gulfstream GV

    Rounding out our ‘Most Deteriorated’ list was an unexpected model, as the GV’s ETP Ratio has been tracking well within acceptable levels, and only 13 units are listed for sale, which equates to 6.8% of the active fleet.

    Again, statistics have a way of skewing things. No aircraft traded in July, but two were withdrawn from inventory and two more joined the fleet for sale, and these changes increased Maintenance Exposure nearly $989k. Even without an Ask Price change, that level of maintenance expense variance is significant, even for this class of asset.

    We believe most sellers have strong bargaining positions in the case of this model, and buyers have a sufficient pool of assets to choose from to facilitate transactions. In fact, we wouldn’t be surprised if the GV appears on our ‘Most Improved’ list for August.


    The Seller’s Challenge

    It is important to understand that the ETP Ratio has more to do with buyer and seller dynamics than it does with either the asset’s accrued maintenance or its price. For any aircraft, maintenance can accrue only so far before work must be completed.

    But as an aircraft’s value decreases, there will come a point when the accrued maintenance figure equates to more than 40% of the aircraft’s ask price. When a prospective buyer adjusts their offer to address this accrued maintenance, the figure is all-too-often considered unacceptable to the seller and a deal is not reached.

    It is not until an aircraft undergoes some major maintenance that a seller is sufficiently motivated to accept a lower figure, or a buyer is willing to pay a higher price and the aircraft transacts, ultimately.

    A wise seller needs to consider the potential marketability impact early maintenance might have on their aircraft, as well as its enrollment on an Hourly Cost Maintenance Program where more than half of their model’s in-service fleet is enrolled on an HCMP.

    Sellers also need to carefully weigh any offer from a prospective buyer against the loss in value of their aircraft for sale as the asset spends more days on the market awaiting a better offer while simultaneously accruing a higher maintenance figure.

    More information from www.assetinsight.com.

    This article was originally published by AvBuyer on August 20, 2019.

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Business Aviation Industry Set To Grow In Size, Scale And Strength Over The Next Five Years see more

    NAFA member Chad Anderson, President of Jetcraft, discusses the two major differences between this year's market forecast and those from previous years.

    Last month we released our 5-Year New & Pre-Owned Business Aviation Market Forecast – the first report of its kind to take a precise, comparative and quantified look at both types of aircraft transactions.

    Aside from introducing pre-owned market predictions, we’ve updated our overarching methodology as compared to previous reports, making it even more precise. We’ve shifted to a five-year rather than a 10-year outlook, to better reflect the current aircraft ownership experience, and adjusted the overall population of aircraft analyzed to more closely align with our expertise. Furthermore, we’ve classified new deliveries as transactions only from date of entry into service and retrospectively normalized classifications prior to 2012, when all aircraft built were considered new deliveries. Finally, we’ve leveraged more of our own transaction data for a truly consolidated outline of how we see the industry behaving.

    The findings show that our industry will continue to grow in size, scale and strength over the next five years, hitting nearly $30bn per year in revenue by 2023 – a remarkable figure. This is the first time a value like this has ever been assigned to the industry. We also expect to see the business aviation fleet grow by 12.1% in that time frame.

    The forecast predicts continued and significant growth in the pre-owned industry, with an expected 11,765 transactions over the next five years, totaling $61bn in value. By 2023, we forecast four times as many pre-owned transactions vs. new deliveries, primarily due to the growing value proposition of these aircraft. Maintenance capabilities are increasing, and we are seeing greater accessibility, rapidity and cost-efficiency of high-quality refurbishment. This is resulting in higher demand for older or out-of-production aircraft, including amongst buyers who previously exclusively bought new models. Our forecast reveals that the average aircraft retirement age is now 32 years – nearly a decade older than previously thought.

    We continue to see a shift towards large aircraft types in both new and pre-owned markets worldwide. Buyers are looking for larger and longer-range models and as a result of this, manufacturers are focusing on producing aircraft almost entirely in the midsize segment and above.

    New unit deliveries are predicted to stay flat throughout the forecast period whilst generating higher revenues, due to the increase in large aircraft transactions. Over the next five years, we’ll see many more customers turn towards large jets rather than light jets, as the needs of business travelers evolve on a more global scale.

    On behalf of the team at Jetcraft, I am honored and excited to have produced the very first new and pre-owned business aviation market forecast, stemming from our 55 years’ experience in connecting buyers and sellers across the world. We hope you find it useful, interesting and insightful and we welcome your comments, questions and feedback.

    To download the full 2019 5-Year New & Pre-Owned Business Aviation Market Forecast, visit www.jetcraft.com/knowledge/market-forecast.

    View video here.  

    This article was originally published by Jetcraft on June 28, 2019.

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    NAFA Announces Geoff Colvin as Keynote Speaker for 48th Annual Meeting see more


    Fort Lauderdale, Fla. – Jan. 15, 2018 - The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that Geoff Colvin will be the keynote speaker at their upcoming 48thAnnual Conference, to be held March 3rdthrough March 6th, 2019,at Marriott Harbor Beach in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Mr. Colvin will be presenting to an audience of aviation industry and finance experts with a global reach; supporting or enabling the financing of general and business aviation aircraft throughout the world. 

    Mr. Colvin is one of the most respected voices in business journalism, with a remarkable understanding of the key issues and trends impacting business today: the global economy; government regulation; the impact of Washington politics/policy on the business environment and the economy; leadership and management; global competitiveness and more. He is an award-winning author, broadcaster, and speaker, and has engaged hundreds of audiences on six continents.

    With his extensive experience as longtime editor and columnist for FORTUNE, top broadcaster on the CBS Radio Network, regular lead moderator of the Fortune Global Forum, and moderator for the International Business Leaders Forum in London, Geoff Colvin is one of America’s sharpest minds on leadership, globalization, wealth creation, the infotech revolution, and related issues. He has appeared on TodayThe O’Reilly FactorGood Morning AmericaCBS This Morning, ABC’s World News, CNN, CNBC, PBS’s Nightly Business Report, among other programs.

    The 48th Annual Meeting of the National Aircraft Financing Association will bring together the most active aircraft lenders in North America and worldwide to network and discuss issues topical to the industry, including: aviation regulatory changes, banking system regulatory changes, updates on new aircraft entering the marketplace, and other issues pertinent to aircraft buyers and their support systems. 

    Mr. Colvin will present “Leading Ahead of What’s Next – The New Rules of Business” for the over 250 attendees. He will address how the world of business is changing in historic and profound ways, with technological disruption, government’s role, and the balance of global economic power shifting massively, helping aviation industry leaders successfully navigate the tumultuous environment.

    For more information about Geoff Colvin, visit http://geoffcolvin.com/speaking/

    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
    Zilberbrand and Dufour Expand VREF Staff and Specialties see more

    NAFA member Jason Zilberbrand, President and CTO of VREF Aircraft Value Reference & Appraisal Services, announces expanding staff and specialties.

    VREF Aircraft Value Reference, the leading provider of aircraft valuations for the aviation industry expands staff and services.

    CHICAGO, IL, USA, June 3, 2019 /EINPresswire.com/ -- VREF Aircraft Value Reference, Appraisal & Litigation Consulting Services the leading provider of aircraft valuations for the aviation industry, continues its 25th Anniversary celebration by adding more staff and specialties to its management team to meet their expanding business requirements.

    VREF has been expanding its specialty expertise’s, which now includes aviation cyber security, airport security, avionics, avionics security, and ground equipment appraisal and Litigation consulting.

    “Offering expertise, consulting and appraisal work related to cyber security and avionics is not something we take lightly. It is a highly specialized field that requires years if not decades of training, certifications and experience to produce high quality and awe-inspiring results”, said Jason Zilberbrand President of VREF. 

    “VREF is the only Business Aviation and for that matter General Aviation firm that offers the breadth of expertise we do with a staff including lawyers, federal agents, teaching professors and A&P technicians and is the most knowledgeable appraisal team I have ever worked with,” said Ken Dufour CEO.

    Eric Pupye, Esq. joined VREF in March to oversee Cyber Security, Airport Security and Avionics Security Expert Witness and Litigation Consulting. Eric is an attorney and Federal Agent with The Department of Homeland Security and he has Top Secret Security Clearance. In addition to being an attorney, Eric is a certified Protection Professional (CPP) and a Professional Certified Investigator (PCI). Prior to joining VREF, Eric spent a decade in the U.S. Air Force working with the National Security Agency, Defense Intelligence Agency, and the Defense Threat Reaction Agency. Eric is a combat veteran and he was awarded the Bronze Star.

    “Eric brings a new skill set and specialties to the firm, we are not only honored to be working with him, but it also establishes VREF as the go-to company for all aviation related litigation support matters,” said Jason Zilberbrand, VREF President and CTO. Mr. Zilberbrand continued, “We are confident that Eric’s talents will be a huge part of our continued growth as we start taking on more sophisticated projects.”

    Additionally, VREF opened its third International Office and welcomed Neil Schiller, ASA of Sydney Australia to the team. This is the third International office opened in 2019 including Switzerland and Austria. Neil will be overseeing appraisal and expert witness work in the Oceania region and he has over 30 years of extensive experience in appraising aviation related assets including aircraft, helicopters, ground equipment and airport equipment. Prior to joining VREF, Neil was in charge of the GECC portfolio of Business aircraft for Australia and New Zealand.

    “Eric Pupye and Neil Schiller are welcome additions to VREF. The team we have assembled represents the best talent available in the industry and our commitment to the industry to drive transparency and ethics. We plan on opening additional offices to assist the existing client base,” said Ken Dufour, ASA and CEO of VREF.  

    About VREF

    VREF Aircraft Value Reference, Appraisal & Litigation Consulting Services, was founded in 1994 and is headquartered in Des Moines, Iowa with offices in Chicago, Rockford, Los Angeles, Boise, Daytona Beach, Austria, Switzerland, China and Australia.

    VREF delivers aircraft and engine data through online subscription services (SaaS) and published quarterly digests.

    VREF provides valuations, appraisals and litigation consulting services to a world-wide client base of aviation professionals including, law firms, banks, financial institutions, leasing companies, manufacturers, aircraft owners, aircraft operators and suppliers. VREF Aircraft Value Reference, Appraisal & Litigation Consulting Services plays a key role in advising decision makers within the aviation industry. 

    VREF is the official Valuation Guide and Appraisal company for the AOPA.

    For further enquiries or interviews please contact the VREF team.

    P: 844-303-VREF
    E: info@vref.com

    Jason Zilberbrand
    email us here

    This press release was originally published by EINPresswire on June 3, 2019.


  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Wayne Starling’s advice for anyone starting out in business aviation see more

    NAFA member, Alasdair Whyte, Co-Founder and Editor of Corporate Jet Investor, talks with Wayne Starling, with Starling Consulting, LLC., about starting out in business aviation.

    Recently, I had the pleasure of being on a panel at the Corporate Jet Investor conference in Miami.  One of the questions asked was for any guidance or counseling that I could give a new person starting out in the aviation business.  My advice was for a person to find a mentor.

    I have thought about that question over the last few days.  I wished I would have had the time to go into more depth. Yes, a mentor is important throughout your career, but there are other important elements as well.    Throughout my career, I have hired and observed many young talented people come and go.  I often reflect on what makes the difference in people succeeding and what causes many of them to fail.  I have analyzed this for years and believe that the top 5% do many things that make a big difference in whether they “stay with the pack” or become top performers in their field.

    My observations watching those top 5%: 

    ATTITUDE:   It starts and ends with their attitude.  What is interesting is the fact that I have asked hundreds of people if they think they have a bad attitude.  No surprise here, but almost all of them never admit to being negative or having a bad attitude.  However, you and I know that when you are around a person that has a negative attitude, they will brighten a room by leaving! One person with a bad attitude can and will cause severe problems if they remain part of a team.

    MOTIVATED:  Have you noticed most people that complain and develop a bad attitude are the ones doing the least amount of work or nothing at all!  This is where they need help by taking an inventory of their activity.   It is hard to be unmotivated when you are busy.   If you want to get motivated, then get busy!  Do something, i.e. get motivated by making some calls, setting up appointments, talking with customers, reading, studying and learning.  Understand that real motivation comes from the “doing” not the “wishing” things would improve.

    STEP UP AND MOVE FORWARD:   Successful people have a desire to learn. They are involved in stepping up by setting realistic goals and then by moving forward.  They take action!  Do they make mistakes?  Yes, but that is a sign of stepping up and moving forward.  In many situations, they will learn from these mistakes more so than from the successes.   They don’t coast through life.  We all know if you are coasting, you can only coast downhill.

    PATIENCE AND COMMITMENT:  I don’t mean sit around and wait.  Yes, sustainable success takes real time and effort to get the greatest rewards. The road to success is not straight without bumps, hills, and plenty of detours.  How you handle the bumps and detours, will determine the person you become.  If you want to become a person of value, a person of character, a person respected, then you must be patient while you work and take the steps and move forward.

    MONITOR CLOSELY THE PEOPLE AROUND YOU:   Some person you meet along the road of life will either pick you up or pull you down, or just hang on to you for a ride.  People that don’t know you will form an opinion of your worth based on the people that are your associates. Who are your role models, your mentors, people you respect in the business and would like to emulate?  Life is full of choices on your way to success so be picky about your influencers!

    All of the above recommendations are part of the puzzle that will make up your success:  your attitude, people that you surround yourself with, your patience and commitment, staying motivated, finding a mentor.  All pieces of the success puzzle.

    Do you want to be one of the top 5% of highly successful people? Step up and move forward and you will not only enjoy the journey, but you will also enjoy success at the destination.   Good Luck!

    This article was originally published by Corporate Jet Investor on November 29, 2018.

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    NAFA member, Neil Book, President and CEO of JSSI, talks to Anthony Harrington, with BAM. see more

    NAFA member, Neil Book, President and CEO of Jet Support Services, Inc. (JSSI), talks to Anthony Harrington with Business Aviation Magazine.

    Q: Your big announcement at EBACE was the acquisition of Conklin & de Decker. Can you comment on the logic that guided the deal?

    NB: There is a very real need in this market for easier access to data and more transparency for aircraft operators and owners. Conklin & de Decker’s mission, as they define it  themselves,  is to arm operators  and owners  with information. Their product set is all about helping the general aviation industry to make more informed decisions around the purchase, operation and sale of aircraft, by providing objective and impartial information. They’ve been doing this for 35 years, so they bring a layer of credible data and a level of customer service that is very consistent with our own culture. 

    The starting point for the deal was the launch of our advisory services platform last year, and the early success that we have had with it. This acquisition will be the first of many as we grow the strength and depth of our services business. There is no doubt that Conklin & de Decker is a tremendous bolt-on acquisition for us. 

    It is worth emphasizing that JSSI’s growth, prior to this, has been entirely organic. This is our first strategic acquisition and we are actively looking for more. 

    Q: How do you see the advisory service side? Does it simply strengthen the JSSI brand and add to the service set you provide or do you see it growing into a significant revenue earner in its own right?

    NB: I think it will absolutely generate significant revenue and earnings, or we wouldn't pursue it. I also believe that it only strengthens the JSSI brand if we deliver a high quality product. We strive to be the best at what we do and if we do not provide the highest quality product, it could have a negative brand impact. 

    On the Conklin side, we have a strong technology team, led by our newly named CIO, Jake Gerstein. I’m confident we’ll be able to relaunch Conklin’s platform with even better data, features, and a more global focus. 

    Q: Both the engine and airframe OEMs are going down a similar route, deploying sensor data beamed directly to operations centres for maintenance purposes. Is this competition for your platform?

    NB: I don’t see OEM real-time data being competition. I’m  confident we can help operators better disseminate and understand that information. We cover every single make and model of aircraft and have been doing so for the last 30 years. We are sitting on a massive amount of maintenance data. This, coupled with operating data from the 2,000 aircraft we support and Conklin’s database, will allow us to deliver a product that helps operators. Ultimately, the market will decide. 

    Q: There is an issue in the market at the moment with the very mixed skill sets of appraisers and valuers, some of whom are very good and others who produce very questionable figures. How do you see this playing with your platform?

    NB: I can’t speak for the entire market, but we take a lot of pride in the integrity of our appraisals. We just hired our eighth ASA-certified appraiser, Rich Thompson, and believe that our technical expertise really sets us apart. This service to date has been very geographically fragmented. Many banks have to partner with a number of different appraisers around the world, and, as you say, this can have very mixed results. The beauty of working with JSSI is that we have our people in key locations around the globe and this leads to a level of consistent and high quality work that our customers appreciate. 

    Q: How is the business doing, generally? 

    NB: Business is performing great and we’re having a lot of fun. We are seeing growth in every region around the world. Flight hours are up generally across the globe, so having 2018 turn into a strong flight-hours year is a very good barometer of the health of the industry. 

    Q: July and August have seen a considerable spike in both rhetoric and actions around protectionism and punitive tariff increases, raising the probability of trade wars weakening global 
    GDP. Do you see this as a significant threat?

    NB: I can’t opine on a theoretical trade war at this point and what impact that will have on our business or global GDP. I am highly confident, however, that business jets are a critical tool to the global economy and will continue to be so. 

    Q: How interesting is the insurance market for JSSI?

    NB: We’re working with two of the largest aviation insurance companies, who have made the choice to outsource their engine claims to JSSI. You have to remember that we manage in excess of 8,000 different maintenance events per year. When an engine claim is filed, we step in and perform a detailed analysis of the event. We determine the insurance company’s responsibility and we direct the work to the facility that is in a position to deliver the best turn-around time, highest quality work and the best pricing. And, of course, we audit the invoices when they come in. Our work has driven significant cost savings for the insurer, which ultimately helps the operators. 

    Q: How big is this market for JSSI?

    NB: We’re focused on the “tier one” insurers today and believe this can be a significant business for us. 

    Q: Over the last two years you have expanded JSSI’s remit to include smaller commercial airlines. How is that working out?

    NB: We have been really pleased with our success in this regional airline market. Since launching the program, we’ve enrolled five regionals and have a very robust pipeline. This year is already the strongest we’ve had through nearly three quarters and we do not anticipate it slowing down.

    This article was originally published in the Autumn 2018 issue of Business Aviation Magazine.


  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Leading Edge Aviation Solutions: Anything Can Happen - and Fast. see more

    NAFA member, Joseph Carfagna, Jr., President of Leading Edge Aviation Solutions, LLC, discusses how quickly things can change in the aviation industry.

    Just a year ago, Joseph L. Carfagna, Jr., President, Leading Edge Aviation Solutions, LLC told us, “These are the best conditions we’ve seen in eight years. The market has loosened up a bit, especially for the U.S. buyer. Prices are low, and sales activity has increased.”

    Now Joe reveals, “Rather than the market loosening up a bit, today may be the start of a market that’s as good as it’s ever been.” Why? “ In late May 2018, many factors are fundamentally different: I believe we’re going to look back on the third quarter of 2017 as the point where the market had bottomed and began to turn. In less than a year, excepting the oldest and least-desirable models, we shifted from a buy- er’s to a seller’s market. There is still a supply of pre-owned airplanes, but if the trend continues, the shortage in desirable airplanes will be very acute. It’s really something.”

    As he mentioned last year, this change is “...primarily driven by U.S. buyers. They’ve led the charge on this market change. There’s no huge surge of offshore buyers.” He added: “The value of the stock market drives the market for corporate airplanes.”

    So, why is this happening? And why, at this particular moment?

    “A few months after it felt like the recovery had begun,” Carfagna says, “Congress began discussing the tax plan that seemed like it was going to be favorable for the corporate jet owner.” This of course subsequently passed. The result? “This market has really turned around, and in an extremely short period of time. U.S. sales activity, especially, has ramped up steeply, which narrows the field of U.S. airplanes for sale. Manufactures must love it. You can’t help but be optimistic.”

    But with the price difference between new and used aircraft still quite wide, American buyers are increasingly looking at foreign-based aircraft, often from countries where maintenance and inspection do not mirror FAA conventions. “International sellers are coming out of the woodwork, selling to U.S. buyers,” Carfagna says. While this means there are more choices for buyers, it also opens a window of unfamiliarity.

    Carfagna whittles away that unfamiliar- ity by staying current on all sales and by passing that immediacy to the customers. “Leading Edge does the same preparatory type of consulting with clients prior to commencing with a sale or an acquisition. We give a lot of counsel about what needs to be done to get the best value for their money. An educated buyer or seller is empowered with knowledge and more likely to make good decisions. ‘What does a buyer notice?’ is a question for both parties.”

    In a pre-purchase inspection, buyers appreciate that, “We have a full-time director of maintenance available for on-site representation and, of course, to render expert opinion. Joe Esmerado, with his 50 years of experience, has intimate knowledge of most of the aircraft in the market and the experience to know what’s up with any new considerations.”

    What’s hot? Emphasizing that the market is volatile, Carfagna ventured some examples. “Late model, low time, large cabin intercontinental business jets, like the G550 and Global 6000 with the right interior configuration are hard to find. Falcon 2000LX, 900LX and Challenger 300/605 are right behind.” Tastes also change, affecting certain design features. “Range isn’t always a magic bullet. If the customer doesn't need intercontinental range, there are great large cabin and super midsize jets that can handle everything they need.”

    “U.S. buyers historically tend to shop U.S. registrations. The N registration remains the gold standard,” Carfagna adds. However, if a suitable U.S. registered aircraft cannot be located, Leading Edge knows where to look, and has plenty of experience and contacts abroad.

    “We provide legwork before we even get close to a pre-purchase inspection; we weed out the undesirable airplanes before you see them.” says Carfagna. “With airplanes from China, Russia, India, for a few non-exclusive examples, you must watch their condition closely. And yes, there are some good ones, but you must be vigilant to avoid problems and wasted motion.”

    And 2020 is coming. “An airplane that’s worth $1.5-$4 million but requires $300-$600k in upgrades--that’s a daunting proposition.” Carfagna says that the low prices of some well performing airplanes are superficially attractive; but what’s the plan for two years out? “A lot of older airplanes will simply stop being viable. There’s just nowhere they can go, and many of them will simply be taken out of service in 2020.”

    “We know that there is no better way to expand our customer base than by creating satisfied customers who realize we brought real value to the table.” Leading Edge Aviation Solutions facilitates nearly as many acquisitions as dispositions. “Aircraft sales, both sides, require a very hands-on, consultative process. Even the most-experienced buyers and sellers don’t see hundreds of transactions in their careers. But we do. In fact, some of our best clients are what the industry would consider the ‘most experienced.’ However, they appreciate the depth of knowledge and experience that Leading Edge can bring to a buy or sell transaction or their future aviation planning. A satisfied customer is a powerful asset because we are in the quintessential referral business. Our customers have friends and their friends rely on friends.”

    Customers, more now than ever, are looking at total cost of ownership, from search, through acquisition, operation, maintenance... to disposition. Leading Edge has stayed on top of this trend. Carfagna adds, “Everyone enjoys getting something ‘extra’ and having peace of mind about the decisions they make. Leading Edge Aviation Solutions together with key players in our industry have put together an exclusive aviation benefits package that provides an ‘extra’ as well

    as peace of mind for our clients. We call this exciting new program THE EDGE
    - Benefits Program. Through this, we have exclusive arrangements with several industry partners that provide discounts on services that corporate operators

    use. Most notably, we have an exclusive arrangement with ARGUS, providing clients who acquire their aircraft using our acquisition services with a valuable three-year bundled package of follow on services. The package consists of annual operational financial benchmarking for their operation, best practices audit-

    ing twice, and an annual market value analysis. This package provides clients with peace of mind, as well as providing extraordinary value.

    He says, “We help ensure that not only did they make a prudent purchase, but also that operational costs of running the airplane are in line and procedures follow good practices. This is valuable during ownership and to help in disposition planning. We’re taking out some of the uncertainty of what an airplane should cost throughout its service to our customers. It’s a very deep and comprehensive data gathering and analysis.” And one size doesn’t fit all. “In conjunction with ARGUS we examine costs regionally – costs vary tremendously from region to region, even airport to airport.”


    “Stay ahead of the looming year 2020 regulations – keep your fleet modern. This is a real deadline for compliance, and an extension to meet requirements is most unlikely. It’s now or never.”

    Of primary importance in a seller’s market, he says, “Make sure that on anything you do, get educated. Do the home- work.” Even so, a good broker is essential, and a time-saver. “The market ultimately is a pretty perfect thing. We listen to it carefully and interpret it. And we work hard to be sure we’re good at interpretation.”

    We have said this before, “Leading Edge doesn’t blame reality; Leading Edge listens to it, analyzes it and helps its clients deal with it effectively. We make sure clients are well-in- formed. Our personalized and professional customer service makes for satisfied clients.” Big isn’t everything. “We do plenty of business, but we make sure that clients are pleased. We’re not the biggest brokerage and acquisitions firm, but we’d like to think we’re as good as it gets, making sure that things are done right.”

    What’s it all about? “Our goal,” says Joe Carfagna Jr., “is simple--to use our knowledge and experience to build a base of very satisfied clients.” In the words of Albert Einstein “Information is not knowledge. The only source of knowledge is experience.”

    This article was originally published by Leading Edge Aviation Solutions in their blog "The Cutting Edge".

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    The Realities of the Pilot Shortage see more

    NAFA member, Rene Banglesdorf, CEO of Charlie Bravo Aviation, discusses how good pilots are hard to find and how the realities of the pilot shortage are starting to affect the aviation industry.

    Gone are the days when aviation departments sort through a huge stack of resumes for pilots – though a few still do. Nowadays, good pilots seem to be hard to find. And the realities of a pilot shortage are finally starting to affect the aviation industry.

    High pilot training costs, several years of earlier hiring freezes in top markets, and the threat of technology replacing pilots in the not-too-distant future has deterred the next generation of talent.

    By my math, the number of pilots retiring exceeds the number of new entrants by more than 100-percent – with an increasing demand from commercial, cargo and private operators. To us that signals a critical shortage – and if the airlines are feeling it sharply, general aviation will be too.

    Already we hear about American or Canadian pilots being recruited to the Middle East and Asia at salaries double or greater the averages in North America. Larger carriers are offering signing bonuses, 20-percent-plus pay increases and better benefits to attract and retain experienced pilots.

    Boeing’s job forecast

    In its most recent jobs forecast, Boeing indicated an unprecedented 20-year demand for pilots at 790,000 – double the current workforce. And according to their report, 80,000 pilots in the US alone will age out in that same timeframe.

    “Despite strong global air traffic growth, the aviation industry continues to face a pilot labour supply challenge, raising concern about the existence of a global pilot shortage in the near-term,” said Keith Cooper, Vice President of Training & Professional Services, Boeing Global Services. “An emphasis on developing the next generation of pilots is key to help mitigate this. With a network of training campuses and relationships with flight schools around the globe, Boeing partners with customers, governments and educational institutions to help ensure the market is ready to meet this significant pilot demand.”

    To this end, Boeing touts its Pilot Development Program – an accelerated training program that guides future pilots from early stage ab-initio training through type rating as a first officer – to help operators meet their growing pilot needs.

    That’s great for companies or people operating Boeing’s aircraft, but it may not factor down into providing a pipeline of pilots for general aviation, especially piston or turboprop operators.

    The competition is on

    Regional airlines have doubled starting salaries and bonuses in recent years, which heralds stiff competition for lower-time pilots, as regional airlines typically serve as time and tenure builders for younger pilots.

    Private aviation flight departments are getting more competitive as well. Recent news of airline compensation increases has encouraged some firms to bump salaries by 30 or 50 per cent to avoid pilot turnover.

    The pilot shortage that’s affecting commercial and private aviation is affecting the military, as well, as fighter pilots are leaving the military in droves for cushier, better-paying jobs in commercial and private aviation.

    “Despite strong global air traffic growth, the aviation industry continues to face a pilot labour supply challenge, raising concern about the existence of a global pilot shortage in the near-term.” ~Keith Cooper

    In order to compete with the airlines and private flight departments, the military is taking steps to improve benefits to their pilots in addition to increasing pay, including more cockpit time, increased flexibility in assignments, more career options, and shorter deployments.

    Many flight departments and airlines are doing the same.

    While I’m all for more competition among operators – especially with my daughter in expensive flight training – the bigger question here is how can we make training less cumbersome or costly?

    Flight schools

    Flight schools, like Flight Safety International, where my daughter is in training for her airline transport pilot (ATP) license, are competing for certified flight instructors to keep up with demand for training. When there aren’t enough instructors, training is delayed, pilot trainees are discouraged, and expenses increase – all deterrents to increasing the numbers of pilots entering the workforce.

    According to a 2017 study conducted by CAE, a civil aviation training provider, the global airline industry will require 255,000 new pilots in order to meet the demand of airline growth and pilot attrition over the next 10 years. “The largest requirement will come from the Asia-Pacific region which alone will need 90,000 new pilots, followed by the Americas which will need 85,000,” said Kinda Sarrage, Regional Sales Manager for the Middle East, Northern Africa and South Asia.

    “The largest requirement will come from the Asia-Pacific region which alone will need 90,000 new pilots, followed by the Americas which will need 85,000.” ~Kinda Sarrage

    “Many regions have been experiencing a higher than usual turnover of experienced pilots or captains leaving them for the Asian carriers as they offer more competitive packages, tax benefits, and flexible work rotations. To compensate for this loss, airlines should establish second officer recruitment schemes. Though some airlines have begun implementing programs to attract lower hour pilots, it is at a much slower rate than that which is required. If airlines established such programs several years ago, they would have a steady pipeline of first officers coming through that would be upgradable to captains today. The reality is that the pool of available captains is shrinking, and this is becoming apparent as airlines struggle to recruit and train pilots to meet their demands,” Sarrage said.

    SARA Act

    In the US, Senators James Inhofe and Tammy Duckworth are co-sponsoring bipartisan legislation aimed at helping the general aviation community.

    The Securing and Revitalizing Aviation (SARA) Act of 2018 (S.3270) calls for the creation of an Aircraft Pilot Education Program that would allow high school students to get a head start on their flying careers by taking aviation-related courses for credit, according to a press release from the National Business Aircraft Association (NBAA).

    The bill also includes reforms to existing Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations to ease the shortage of qualified designated pilot examiners (DPE) needed for initial and recurrent pilot training.

    Additional provisions would enhance existing due process protections for pilots; extend limited liability coverage for FAA designees performing agency duties, but who are not covered under immunities for government employees, as well as for pilots performing volunteer missions; and grant the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) the authority to review denials of airman certificates by the FAA.


    The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) has worked diligently for years for medical requirements reform, facilitating the renewal of licenses for more than 5,000 “rusty” pilots.

    The AOPA You Can Fly High School Initiative ninth-grade STEM curriculum was tested in 29 high schools during the 2017-2018 school year. It has proved popular with teachers and students alike because it engages youth with hands-on activities and exposes them to the world of aviation and potential careers. The program, created in partnership with educators, curriculum developers, and aviation experts, offers four-year study options in aviation career pathways and is aligned with rigorous math and science educational standards already in use.

    Each of us should be working toward attracting as many pilots and mechanics as possible to aviation –and then working to keep them here!

    General aviation flight departments are beginning to awaken to a reality that pilot salaries, bonuses and flexibility are changing. What are you doing to adapt?

    Rene Banglesdorf is the CEO of Charlie Bravo Aviation, a worldwide aircraft brokerage based in Austin, Texas. She is an author, speaker and podcast host.

    This article was originally published in Altitudes Magazine on October 14, 2018.


  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    GAMA shares good news from the U.S. House of Representatives for the general aviation industry. see more

    NAFA member, GAMA shares good news for the general aviation industry from the U.S. House of Representatives.  

    Washington, DC –– The General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) today applauded the U.S. House of Representatives for passing legislation authorizing the programs of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for five years and advancing key priorities for the general aviation manufacturing and maintenance industry.

    “We are thrilled to see a long-term FAA reauthorization bill that will strengthen the general aviation industry, mandate needed reforms, and provide certainty for the entire aviation sector,” said GAMA President and CEO Pete Bunce. “We thank the House of Representatives and the bipartisan leadership of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, including Chairman Bill Shuster (R-PA), Ranking Member Peter DeFazio (D-OR), Aviation Subcommittee Chairman Frank LoBiondo (R-NJ) and Ranking Member Rick Larsen (D-WA), for their work on this important legislation. We encourage the U.S. Senate to pass the measure expeditiously.”

    H.R. 302, which authorizes the FAA through September 30, 2023, includes numerous provisions that will improve aviation safety, streamline regulatory burdens, strengthen job creation, encourage competitiveness and innovation, and stimulate exports. Specifically, the bill:

    • Requires the U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary establish a Safety Oversight and Certification Advisory Committee that includes representatives of commercial and general aviation, including aircraft, engine, and avionics manufacturers, and maintenance, repair and overhaul organizations. The Committee’s work will focus on certification and regulatory process reform, safety management systems, rulemaking improvements and enhancing global competitiveness;
    • Strengthens the effectiveness of the Organizational Designation Authorization (ODA) process and oversight to enhance the predictability and efficiency of the certification process for new products and technology;
    • Sends a clear message to the FAA to improve safety cooperation with international partners, facilitate improvements and end delays in the validation and acceptance of aviation products;
    • Requires the FAA establish a comprehensive regulatory database and a Regulatory Communications Consistency Board to reduce regulatory inconsistency at the agency;
    • Calls for the FAA to establish a Task Force on Flight Standards Reform to help drive needed improvements in the FAA Flight Standards Office. The Task Force includes manufacturers and will look at how the certification, operational evaluation and entry into service of newly manufactured aircraft can be improved;
    • Asks the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to conduct a review of the FAA’s Part 23 rulemaking implementation to ensure the agency is working with industry to maximize the rulemaking’s effectiveness;  
    • Mandates the FAA Aircraft Registry Office in Oklahoma City remain open in the event of a government shutdown or emergency furlough; and
    • Addresses the aviation workforce shortage by establishing a ‘Youth Access to American Jobs in Aviation Task Force’ and a ‘Women in Aviation Advisory Board’; directs the GAO to initiate a study on the current and future supply of aviation and aerospace workforce; and establishes a pilot grant program to train pilots and maintenance and technical workers.

    For additional information, please contact Sarah McCann, GAMA Director of Communications, at +1 (202) 637-1375 or smccann@gama.aero.

    This original article was published by GAMA on September 26, 2018.