Melbourne Orlando International Airport welcomes ongoing supply of SAF

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Avfuel and Embraer have collaborated to bring Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) to Florida’s Melbourne Orlando International Airport.

The agreement comes as Embraer shared its commitment on climate action, including achieving carbon neutral operations by 2040 and supporting the aviation industry’s goal of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. Both goals include integrating the use of SAF into the aircraft manufacturers sustainability initiatives.

Avfuel provided its first delivery of SAF to Melbourne Orlando’s FBO facility Sheltair for storage and handling on 14 July. Embraer plans to use the SAF in ongoing operations at its executive jet’s headquarters in Melbourne. Each truckload (approximately 8,000 gallons) of the fuel from Neste’s Houston location provides a 19.1 metric ton reduction in carbon emissions over its lifecycle – equivalent to the amount of carbon sequestered by 23.4 acres of US forests per year.

“We couldn’t be more pleased to partner with Embraer in furthering sustainability initiatives,” said Craig Sincock, Avfuel’s president and CEO. “We are honoured to provide Embraer with the leading business aviation sustainability solution—SAF—and admire its resolve against climate change. By using SAF, Embraer’s not only providing for a significant reduction in carbon emissions, it’s also providing an exceptional educational opportunity to introduce operators to SAF.”

“At Embraer, we have a deeply rooted heritage in environmentalism, which drives us to find solutions toward a more sustainable future for business aviation. As part of those solutions, we have already begun using SAF when flying to industry events. However, we are now taking our efforts a step further,” said Michael Amalfitano, president and CEO of Embraer Executive Jets. “As we just announced our ESG commitments, it’s crucial that we lead by example to show our local community, our customers, and our operators that we are doing our part and taking immediate action to shape a more sustainable ecosystem of air travel.”

Meanwhile, Sheltair Melbourne’s General Manger, Jamie Toler added: “As business aviation continues to grow, sustainable aviation fuel will be a vital part of advancing our industry and protecting the environment. We are delighted to be an instrument of change thanks to our relationship and partnership with Embraer and Avfuel. Our mutual commitment will only strengthen more environmentally friendly programs.”

Avfuel expands branded network with addition of Flightways Columbus

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As the lone FBO at Ohio’s Columbus Airport – the region’s only towered airport – Flightways Columbus has joined Avfuel’s branded FBO network.

Offering guests streamlined travel services including third-party maintenance and an avionics shop on site, Flightways Columbus boasts a convenient location along the Alabama/ Georgia border and congested airspace for tech stops and overnights alike.

Offering a complete portfolio of professional services and amenities, Flightways Columbus features full-service fuelling facilities, as well as self-serve avgas; GPU, potable water, a stair truck/ passenger stairs; baggage unloading and loading; cleaning; after-hours service; hotel reservations, rental cars and limo services and catering. It also features a comfortable passenger lobby; an executive conference room, a pilot briefing room and a relaxing pilot lounge and snooze room.

“At Flightways, we challenge ourselves to establish a personal connection with all customers and strive to create positive experiences that are unforgettable, which falls in line with the service that Avfuel provides – to connect people, companies and cultures,” said Michele Renfroe, Flightways Columbus’ FBO Manager.

She was joined by Joel Hirst, Senior VP Sales at Avfuel, who said: “The Avfuel team is thrilled to welcome Flightways Columbus to the Avfuel network. Its team is known for providing attentive care to planes, pilots and passengers – we look forward to helping enhance that customer experience with Avfuel’s reliable fuel supply and suite of solutions. It’s a true partnership focused on the needs of the customers. We look forward to the opportunities that lie ahead and thank the Flightways Columbus team for entrusting its fuel supply services with Avfuel.

GateOne acquires Chandler Municipal Airport’s sole FBO

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Chandler Air Service, the sole FBO at Arizona’s Chandler Municipal Airport has been acquired by GateOne, which is now the owner and operator of three FBO facilities (including Chandler Air Service) serving the Southwest aviation community. GateOne’s FBO family also includes facilities at Cedar City in Utah and San Antonio in Texas.

GateOne’s latest acquisition includes an 8,000 sq.ft. office building with a reception, pilot shop, flight instructor offices, classroom and study areas, a conference room, break room and lounge areas. It also features a 14,000 sq.ft. executive hangar capable of housing turboprops and medium size jets as well as an 8,000 sq.ft. maintenance hangar. It also includes all of Chandler Air Service’s business lines: full FBO services, a renowned part 141 flight school, aircraft rentals and maintenance.

A number of updates are already in the works on the FBO, although it will remain open during the transition process. GateOne is also in discussions with airport management to build additional hangars featuring 28-foot doors to handle larger business jets.

Chandler Air Service, which has been in operation for more than 40 years, having opened in 1976, has garnered a reputation for exceptional customer care. GateOne will maintain the FBOs staff and leadership, ensuring a smooth transition for its valued customers. The FBO will also undergo rebranding to the GateOne Chandler name.

“The team at Chandler has historically done an upstanding job at addressing the aviation community’s needs,” said Thomas Mathew, President and CEO of GateOne. “GateOne looks forward to helping support the airport’s growth as business and leisure travel in southern Phoenix booms. Our goal is to build upon the FBO’s solid foundation to enhance the local aviation community’s experience with GateOne Chandler as a premier gateway to metro Phoenix – an experience that will match the level of service and amenities found at GateOne Cedar City and GateOne Stinson.”

Situated in the southeast corner of the greater Phoenix Metropolitan Area in central Arizona, the Avfuel-branded GateOne Chandler FBO will provide a convenient fly-in location for access to the area’s businesses, fine dining and cultural attractions with the Grand Canyon and Air Museum of Tucson just a couple of hours flight away.

Richmond Executive Aviation opens premier facility at Chesterfield County Airport

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The full-service FBO, Richmond Executive Aviation (REA), has celebrated the opening of its new premier facility at Richmond Executive-Chesterfield County Airport, Virginia in the US.

The $2.5 million investment features an 800 sq.ft FBO terminal, 1,700 sq. ft. of office space and 20,000 sq. ft. of hangar space able to accommodate up to a Gulfstream G450. The luxe FBO facility combines a modern, industrial architecture with natural elements for an inviting atmosphere. Amenities include a state-of-the-art meeting space with seating for 15 and full AV, a pilot lounge, a pilot planning area, flight training classrooms, a concession bar, Wi-Fi and charging stations, and an impressive lobby area with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the ramp and into the hangar.

The airport features a 5,500 foot runway and REA offers business aviation customers fuelling services supplied by Avfuel, ground handling, concierge, aircraft-side ground transportation, in-flight catering, cabin restocking, aircraft management, aircraft sales and flight training. The pilot and veteran owned FBO prides itself on its motto ‘ business isn’t expected, it’s earned’ so customers can expect personalised attention.

“Our company is professional, modern and comfortable,” said Mark Hackett, CEO of REA. “Couple that with attention to detail, an emphasis in customer appreciation, and service beyond excellence… You then no longer have competition, but rather a benchmark to which others strive to match.”

Southern Sky Aviation acquires sole FBO at Trent Lott Airport

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Southern Sky Aviation – an aviation charter, maintenance, management and sales company – has expanded its suite of aviation businesses having acquired the sole FBO at Trent Lott International Airport (PQL) in Pascagoula, Mississippi.

The company’s unique background in charter services means Southern Sky Aviation has a comprehensive understanding of the needs of pilots, planes and passengers, which in turn will enable tit to offer a highly-personalised FBO experience focused on exceptional care and services.

“We are excited to launch our FBO services at Trent Lott International Airport,” said Bo Andrews, CEO of Southern Sky Aviation. “We look forward to working with the airport’s director, Carol Snapp, and the airport authority to establish best-in-class services and serve the customers of PQL.”

Donald Howell, President of Southern Sky Aviation, added: “Our strategy from the very beginning was to build a full-service aviation company that included FBO services. Darryl is a great leader and excellent operator that will help us grow our FBO division and deliver outstanding customer service. Trent Lott allows us to bring all of the services we offer to the Gulf Coast aviation community.”

Southern Sky’s acquisition of the FBO facility includes a 4,300 sq.ft. FBO terminal and more than 20,000 sq. ft. of hangar space. The airport is currently closed for a runway resurfacing project that will take the runway to a 275,000-pound dual-wheel gear surface. Southern Sky will use this time to make improvements to the existing terminal building and select hangars, including new branding and a fresh aesthetic for enhanced comfort and function. It will also install a 20,000 gallon Jet A fuel tank to better support the needs of customers.

To coincide with the completion of the runway upgrade, Southern Sky will unveil its updates with a grand re-opening ceremony in October. In the meantime it is prepared to welcome aircraft up to 50 feet that receive permission to land at the Pascagoula hub, during the airport’s temporary closure.

Darryl Brewer, President FBO Division, Southern Sky Aviation, noted, “We are a team that’s passionate about serving the aviation community and waited for the right opportunity to expand into the FBO business. We are honoured to be the official gateway to the Pascagoula region and are ready to serve the airport’s tenants and guests with the utmost consideration for exceptional care, and safe, quality services.”

Falcon Field Airport in Arizona celebrates opening of new Avflight facility

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Having established operations at Falcon Field Airport in Mesa, Arizona in December 2020 Avflight has now opened a new facility at the dedicated business and general aviation hub. The opening ceremony was held during the Arizona Business Aviation Association’s in-person meeting, which was held at the airport at the end of June.

The new facility includes a 5,000 sq.ft. FBO terminal, more than 500 sq. ft. of office space available for leasing and 11,000 sq.ft. of hangar space with plans to expand to accommodate a growing customer base at the Mesa gateway.

Featuring a modern aesthetic in keeping with the Avflight brand, the state-of-the-art FBO terminal features passenger lounges, snooze rooms, showers, a kitchen, a flight planning room and a conference room. Conveniently located on the airport field the Avfuel-branded location allows for direct access from road to ramp with ample parking space.

“The Avflight team is honoured to serve as a premier gateway to Mesa and the greater Phoenix region,” said Garrett Hain, Avflight’s Vice President of finance. “When we moved onto the field in December, we sought to bring our passion for aviation and comprehensive knowledge of aviation services – backed by the resources afforded by a network of 23 premier FBOs – to the FFZ field. Our goal was, and continues to be, to build on the foundation of Falcon Field Airport’s offerings with new facilities and a dedication to customer care. We’re here to be a true, trusted partner, dedicated to supporting the airport’s growing customer base with first-class services and amenities.”


Hollywood Burbank’s Million Air FBO teams up with Avfuel for SAF supply

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Avfuel has teamed up with Million Air Burbank, an Avfuel-branded FBO – to provide its customers with an ongoing supply of Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel.

The first truckload of Avfuel’s sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) arrived at the FBO on 24 June and each truckload (approximately 8,000 gallons) of SAF supplied to the FBO by Avfuel provides a 22 metric ton reduction in carbon emissions over its lifecycle. That’s the equivalent of making five passenger vehicles zero emissions for one year.

“I think most of us in the aviation industry have been looking for ways to play a part in the battle against climate change,” said Priscilla Howden, General Manager of Million Air Burbank. “So, when we were given the opportunity to provide SAF to our customers, we jumped on it. Working with flight departments, Avfuel, Neste and the Hollywood Burbank Airport on a joint effort to reduce carbon emissions has been an incredible and inspiring experience.”

Keith Sawyer, Avfuel’s Manager of Alternative Fuels, added: “Avfuel is proud to work with long-time partner, Million Air, and its Burbank team to offer its customers the ultimate solution for sustainability – SAF. Together, we’re able to provide a real, measurable difference in carbon emissions for a brighter, cleaner future. We look forward to continuing to work with Million Air at its Burbank location and beyond to identify further opportunities to promote and enable the use of SAF.”

The consistent supply of SAF at Million Air follows the announcement that Sonoma Jet Center has also agreed to offer its customers Neste MY Saf from Avfuel on an ongoing basis. Anyone flying to Charles M. Schulz Sonoma County Airport can refuel with the new alternative fuel, directly reducing their carbon emissions.

Paragon Aviation adds Magnum FBO locations to European network

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Paragon Aviation Group is expanding its presence in Europe with the addition of two Magnum FBO locations in Vienna and Bratislava, alongside nine handling locations across Austria and Slovakia.

“We are extremely proud that our customer service commitment has been recognised by Paragon Aviation Group,” said Florian Samsinger, Managing Director of Magnum FBO. “Our common goal is to accelerate brand-new opportunities to deliver the immense services, making sure our customers can experience and appreciate the value of such an advanced upgrade.”

Established in 2012, Magnum FBO has been serving passengers and crew, offering an array of support services, including customs/ immigration assistance, concierge support, slot coordination and exclusive lounge accommodation.

Megan Barnes, President of Paragon Aviation noted, “As we return back to in-person business transactions and events, we are pleased to have Magnum FBO join our network and provide Paragon customers with a new travel region that instills the same core values as our other members worldwide.” She also stated that “Magnum’s high operating standards and dedication to safety assures travellers a flawless journey no matter which Paragon Network location they visit.”

With more than 100 operations worldwide in 25 countries, the Paragon Network continues to grow. With FBOs in Barcelona, Madrid, Brussels, Zurich, Monterrey, Cape Town, Dubai, Sydney and Paris, much of the predominant business regions are covered. In the US it also offers facilities in Los Angeles, Houston, Detroit, Dallas, Austin, Miami, Chicago, Boston, Seattle, Washington D.C. and New York.

June sees uptick in business aviation activity

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According to the latest Global Market Tracker weekly report from WingX, global business jet activity saw a resurgence in the first half of June, surpassing pre-COVID levels and outstripping cargo growth for the first time.

The report highlights that while lifestyle and occasionally necessity sustained business jet demand during the pandemic, the last few months have seen leisure boost the recovery. This is expected to accelerate through the summer, with the return of at least some business travel taking  bizav utilisation to new highs in 2021 compared to 2019.

With more than 100,000 business jet flights operated so far this month, the sector represents 15% of all fixed wing movements, activity which is 12% higher than in the first half of June 2019.  Meanwhile, scheduled airline activity globally is still languishing with more than 40% below pre-pandemic activity for this time of year.

The US market continues to go from strength to strength with business jet activity in the country so far this year now 1% above the same period in 2019, and the resurgence gathering pace, with the first half of June seeing 20% more business jet movements than June 2019. In Florida business jet departures are now a whopping 30% higher in 2021 than in 2019, with 160,000 departures recorded (more than 10 times the number of business jet movements in the UK) for the same period. Also worth noting is that flights between Florida and New York are up almost 70% on 2019 figures.

Meanwhile, in Europe business aviation activity is also seeing a surge with the first two weeks of June only 6% behind 2019, although overall it is trailing 2019 by 15%. Strong growth continues to be noted in business jet flights in Russia, Greece, across the Balkans and much of Eastern Europe. In Western Europe the outlier is Portugal, with flights above normal for the season.

Elsewhere business aviation activity continues to show strength in Africa, where it is currently 45% ahead of 2019 figures, South America where it is 80% ahead and in the Middle East, where it is 23% ahead of 2019 figures. WingX also notes a clear correlation between range and travel restrictions globally with domestic sectors back to where they were in 2019, whereas international business jet sectors are still down by 20% vs 2019.



Ben Gurion Airport in Israel welcomes ExecuJet FBO

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ExecuJet, which is part of the Luxavation Group – one of the largest business aircraft and helicopter operators worldwide, is opening an FBO facility at Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv, Israel.

Managed in partnership with Flyeast, an Israeli aviation and tourism company, the FBO will be part of the luxury Fattal Terminal at Ben Gurion Airport. Services offered will include VIP processing, supervisory aircraft handling, concierge services, flight arrangements and charter solutions.

“We’re now finalising key project elements such as passenger flow within the VIP passenger lounge within the Fattal terminal. We’re planning to deliver the highest service levels to our many valued clients,” said Mike Berry, ExecuJet’s President Aviation Services and Vice President Middle East.

He added that the “man behind the terminal, David Fattal is already globally respected as a hospitality expert. He owns Fattal Hotels, which operates over 200 hotels across 19 countries.”

Alongside the FBO project, ExecuJet is working with Flyeast to establish a charter business unit in Tel Aviv, which says Berry, “will be seen as an extension of our global charter network and generate flights for the group and the local business.” The FBO facility in Tel Aviv enables ExecuJet to capitalise on increased traffic in the region due to the treaty signed in 2020 by Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

“Despite the challenges facing the global aviation industry, at ExecuJet we continue to concentrate on innovation and the expansion of our outstanding services across the Middle East and, indeed, the world,” concluded Berry.