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BlueSky Business Aviation News | 26th March 2020 | Issue #550

Resilient Aviation
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International Business and Private Aviation Industry News

Signature Flight Support

Montreal, Canada:

Bombardier halts production in Canada and Belfast

In support of recent mandates from the Governments of Quebec and Ontario to help slow the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, Bombardier has suspended all non-essential work in Canada until April 26th and in Belfast, until April 20th.

A statement from Bombardier said: “As the UK ramps up efforts to delay the spread of COVID-19, and following announcements from Bombardier Aviation on the closure of sites in Quebec and Ontario, Canada, we have made the decision to stop production temporarily at all our Northern Ireland sites until 20 April. These measures will help us maintain as many people as possible in full-time employment."

Employees impacted by these temporary shutdowns will be placed on furlough, as will corporate office employees whose support functions are less critical in the short-term.


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Altitude Attitude

Barry Owens

Barry Owens, writer/producer at Greteman Group, a marketing communications agency based in Wichita, the Air Capital.

Remote Control

We didn’t rush for the doors at Greteman Group. Truth is, a lot of us are married to the place. It’s a real looker.

Plus, there are plants to water. The company is good. The coffee ain’t bad. But things are moving fast. We have to stay in front of them.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is spreading. Seems the best way to beat it is to not let it get close. The situation called for a calm, orderly exit.

We’ve done just that.

The Home Team

We packed our computers into our cars at the end of the day on Tuesday and by Wednesday morning our remote work plan was in action. Our management team was video conferencing. Our brand managers were working the home phones. Our creatives were creating at their kitchen tables.

The Home Team

An email alerting clients about our remote work plan went out first thing Wednesday morning - a message from the “home team.” We listed our cell numbers, and told them to call or text with questions.

It’s mostly business as usual, we explained. We may not be in the office, but we’re still on the job.


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Embraer to collaborate on technologies and solutions to combat COVID-19

Embraer is working in partnership with companies and research centers on technologies that can increase the availability of equipment and solutions to combat COVID-19 in Brazil.

The actions, developed jointly with Embraer's supply chain, include the manufacturing of parts for the ventilator and respirator industry, the replacement of imported components for ventilators, the development of high-efficiency filtration systems for transforming regular hospital beds into intensive care beds and studies for the development of simple, robust and portable respirators aimed at rapid implementation and availability.

A group of professionals has already been leading initiatives in support of a respirator factory in Brazil, with a plan to start the production of parts next week, in response to the emergency demand for this equipment.



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Peterborough, Ontario:

Flying Colours Corp. opens new and largest paint hangar at Ontario headquarters

Flying Colours Corp., the North American maintenance, repair, overhaul and completions business has officially opened the doors of its newest, largest and most advanced paint preparation and application facility at its Peterborough, ON. headquarters.

The new purpose-built, state-of-the-art facility gives Flying Colours the capacity to paint any size business aircraft including Bombardier Global 7500, Gulfstream G700 types, as well as narrow body executive airliners such as the A220 or B737-900 models, for an elite clientele. The first paint job is already in process on a Bombardier Global aircraft.

Incorporating the latest technology to support the growing demand for expert paint work for in-service and new-completion aircraft the paint shop is designed with functionality and sustainability in mind.

Fully computerised and climate controlled, the pressurized cross-draft paint booth measures an impressive 138 ft wide and 158 ft deep with the tail height reaching 55 ft.


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Washinton DC:

AviationManuals outlines COVID-19 procedures

Suggestions for Flight, Ground, ERP, and FBO Planning.

AviationManuals, the leading provider of digital operations manuals, has recommended procedures to address aircraft operator issues surrounding private aviation operations as governments throughout the world respond to growing concerns about the spread of COVID-19.

"Formalized procedures in the form of quality operations manuals and an Emergency Response Plan can really help with preparedness and planning in times like these," said AviationManuals CEO Mark Baier. "To prevent the spread of the disease, authorities stepped up precautionary measures, so it's good for everyone in an operation to be on the same page," he added.

AviationManuals outlines COVID-19 procedures

"We try to cover some highlights for national and international flights as well as ground operations," Baier said.

"Above all, be safe and remember this is not just about how dangerous the disease is, but really about being a part of the effort to help stem its spread."

If you can't avoid travelling, there are many factors to keep in mind.


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Jon Howey

Jon Howey

CALC, a full value chain aircraft solutions provider for the global aviation industry, has announced the appointment of Jon Howey as the Group’s Senior Vice President, Global Aviation Risk Management with immediate effect.

Based in Dublin, Jon reports directly to the CEO. He takes charge of developing global aviation risk management strategy and designing execution protocols, with a focus on risk controls for new and mid-life assets, as well as developing all risk related policies and standard operating procedures. With his wealth of knowledge and expertise, Jon will work with the management team to further sharpen the Group’s risk management framework, analyze all risk-related issues and enhance corporate governance structures.

Jon brings with him more than 10 years of experience within aviation finance sector, in which specializing in credit and asset risk, debtor management and airline industry analysis. Prior to joining CALC, he held senior risk positions in aviation industry. He was the Vice President of Risk Management at Aercap and Risk Manager at AWAS, with proven track record in managing portfolio of over 1500 aircraft, 80 customers and $5bn in revenue.

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WINGX Market Tracker:

Aviation activity at near standstill as Europe becomes virus epicentre


Continuing the new weekly series of reports from WINGX, Market Tracker keeps you up to date with business aviation trends in light of the current Coronavirus pandemic.

Business aviation flights to and from Europe are down by 24% so far in March 2020 compared to the same days in March 2019. The slowdown accelerated into a slump last week, with flight activity over the most recent weekend falling by 70%.

Italy has been most affected, with business jet and turbo prop flights down by 65% this month, which amounts to a reduction of just under 2,000 sectors. Flights to and from France, Turkey, Belgium, The Netherlands and Poland are down by 30% or more. Transatlantic flights are also down by a third this month.

The UK is the busiest business aviation market this month, with only 8% reduction in flight movements, and flight hours for flights are trending up so far in March. There has also been an increase in flights from Sweden, Portugal, Latvia and Estonia. Flights from Europe to Cyprus, China and the UAE are up this month.


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As we face a wall of blanket travel bans, why emergency flights must be allowed to go ahead to help combat the COVID-19 crisis

Mark Briffa, CEO, Air Partner plc

  Mark Briffa

There is no doubt that this is an extremely worrying and challenging time for everyone, with far-reaching health, economic and societal ramifications.

Governments and NGOs globally are working around-the-clock to limit the spread of COVID-19, and a necessary part of this is the enforcement of some travel bans and restrictions.

However, as more and more countries issue blanket bans on air travel and transport, my concern is that this could do more damage than good. Global air infrastructure has always played an important role at times of global crisis, and it must be allowed to do so now.

Airports and airways need to remain open for urgent travel and transportation, but currently the trend is going in the other direction, towards universal closure, despite the fact that there are still countless people stranded around the world, with limited - if any - means of getting back to their home countries.


Read now: Updating your manuals for travel health concerns

Meet the new X-1 Family of FBO Solutions.

Bizav Newsreel

This week . . . Associations must stick together

Gear Up TV's Liz Moscrop presents an extended interview, recorded 'down the line', with BBGA CEO, Marc Bailey.

Marc Bailey

Marc addresses the COVID-19 crisis; the current state of play; what's happening behind the scenes; and the current impact on our industry as we understand it right now.

video icon watch the interview

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Nuremberg, Germany:

FAI works around the clock to meet critical COVID-19 demands

FAI rent-a-jet AG, Germany’s leading Air Ambulance Specialist and Special Mission Operator has been working around the clock to help evacuate those in need following unprecedented demand from the spread of coronavirus.

This includes both medical evacuations of infected patients and repatriation flights of unaffected healthy individuals from all corners of the globe.

FAI works around the clock to meet critical COVID-19 demands

The company is currently operating at maximum capacity, averaging around six missions per day with its 10-strong fleet of five Learjet 60s, four Bombardier Challenger 604, and one Global Express air ambulance aircraft. Additionally, FAI is supplementing its fleet with its executive charter fleet of business jets.


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United Kingdom:

World Fuel Services supports world’s largest wind farm

WFS to provide Jet A-1 fuel to support increased demand for sustainable energy.

World Fuel Services (WFS) has won a tender to provide Jet A-1 fuel to the helicopter service for Hornsea One offshore wind farm.

The relationship will see World Fuel working in conjunction with Ørsted and Swire Oilfield Services in response to the unique challenges presented by running the world’s largest wind farm - including access and extreme weather conditions.

World Fuel Services supports world’s largest wind farm

Ørsted was looking for a single counterparty to do it all – supply jet fuel from terminal to quayside and act as the single point of contact to meet all of the complex requirements associated with such a project.


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Luxaviation launches solidarity initiative for business aviation industry

Luxaviation Group has launched the European Business Aviation Solidarity Initiative (EBASI), a solidarity endeavour which puts the Group’s administrative, financial and procurement resources at the service of smaller operators and fellow contenders during the COVID-19 crisis.

Starting this week, and for the next three months, Luxaviation Group will support the European business aviation industry by sharing its expertise in procurement, purchasing power and finance resources with business aviation companies for free, allowing them to concentrate on the core operations of their business.


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Addis Ababa, Ethiopia:

Aviation Africa 2020 inspires significant debate and discussion despite Coronavirus outbreak

The resounding message from Africa’s aviation community attending this year’s buzzing Aviation Africa summit held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, was that all stakeholders must cooperate and collaborate to achieve a sustainable aviation future.

Delegates debated existing and new challenges as discussions surrounding coronavirus, sustainability, and the need for more open African skies, unified 600 attendees from 70 countries.

IATA special envoy to Africa, Raphael Kuuchi.

IATA special envoy to Africa, Raphael Kuuchi.

Speaking on the opening day of the conference IATA special envoy to Africa, Raphael Kuuchi, gave the body’s latest CORVID-19 update stating that In December 2019, IATA forecasted 3.8% African RPK growth for 2020, but this has been narrowed to 3.4% following the outbreak.


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A message from BlueSky:

Introducing Resilient Aviation

Our new Comms e-zine.

With countries around the world in lockdown amid the widespread escalation of the coronavirus pandemic, we find ourselves in unsettling times.

The usual gatherings, press briefings, conferences, shows and exhibitions are either cancelled or postponed and we don’t know how many weeks or months it will be before we see each other again.

We hope it won’t be long and more than anything - that you and your loved ones keep well.

During these unprecedented times, BlueSky is pleased to partner with Emerald Media, with whom we run niche industry conferences, to produce content dedicated to focusing on how our industry is rallying.

Our new 'Resilient Aviation' issues will run for a short time and will be interspersed with your usual weekly BlueSky News. We will highlight and celebrate company and individual achievements, as well as innovative thinking, resourcefulness and the creativity that defines our vibrant industry.


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United Kingdom:

NOT business as usual for Osprey Flight Solutions

Following the launch of its risk management support platform - Osprey:Open - earlier this month, Osprey Flight Solutions has announced significant updates directly related to COVID-19 in an effort to support the industry during this global crisis.

CEO Andrew Nicholson has the following message:

The aviation industry is experiencing the greatest impact on operations in a generation, if not ever, as we all deal with the impact of Covid-19.

Osprey exists to provide the industry with the best risk management data, information and analytics to support your operations and if we were to just 'cope' with this situation then we would be lacking. I want to tell you that it is categorically NOT business as usual for us. We have turned on all the taps, called in all the favours, and buckled ourselves in for a hard, fast ride over the coming weeks and months to make sure that we are, every day, improving the support that we can provide.

Our absolute priority is to give you the most accurate reporting that will give you the earliest possible warning that the tide may be turning and that you can start to prepare to resume business.

Significant updates to support the industry


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United Kingdom:

Harrods Aviation to temporarily suspend operations

In response to the UK Government’s COVID-19 guidelines, Harrods Aviation has taken the decision to temporarily close its FBO and maintenance facilities at its London Luton and London Stansted bases.

This temporary closure takes effect from Friday 27 March 2020 at 1800 local at Stansted and 2359 local at Luton, and will be reviewed on 17 April 2020.

"This is clearly a very serious global situation, and as an organisation, we felt the right action to take was to close our operations at both bases," Paul Norton Managing Director of Harrods Aviation said.

"Using the philosophy of people before profit, the safety and wellbeing of our staff, our customers and the wider community becomes our primary focus. This decision has of course, not been taken lightly. We believe our customers will understand and appreciate the seriousness of the situation and our positive response to it."

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Tastefully Yours.

Paula Kraft

Paula will be back next week

Nuremberg, Germany:

Navigating through the Corona crisis

A message from Viktor Peters, CEO, Aero-Dienst.

The COVID-19 crisis is changing our world. At Aero-Dienst we have weathered many storms during the last 60 years and managed so far to keep the virus away from our employees, aircraft and hangars.

However, it becomes more and more evident that this crisis will not be over shortly and the future will be different.

For most of us, aviation is more than just a job. We are all more used to 24/7 than to nine-to-five. As pilots, technicians and aviation professionals we are well trained in being responsible, flexible and stress-resistant. Now is the time to bring these values to our private surroundings.

By responsibly educating the careless, calming down the panicking and flexibly adopting to the new situation we can protect our beloved ones and contribute to slowing down the spread of the virus.


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United Kingdom:

AeroExpo UK 2020 has been cancelled in light of the current Coronavirus outbreak.

Organisers have announced that the expo - together with its sister event RotorTech UK 2020 - will return to Wycombe Air Park, Buckinghamshire, next year, 10-12 June 2021.

Tickets and landing fees paid for the 2020 Show will be refunded.


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United Kingdom:

BBGA honours Tim Scorer, aviation lawyer, with prestigious Michael Wheatley Award

Tim Scorer, long-serving aviation lawyer and currently a Consultant at Kennedy’s Law Firm, is the recipient of this year’s British Business Aviation Association (BBGA) Michael Wheatley Award for Outstanding Services to the general aviation industry.

The award was presented by BBGA Chair and fellow aviation lawyer, Aoife O’Sullivan during the Association’s recent annual conference at Luton Hoo.

BBGA honours Tim Scorer, aviation lawyer, with prestigious Michael Wheatley Award

Aoife thanked Tim Scorer for the excellent contribution he has given to the aviation industry over the decades, supporting OEMs, airlines, private flyers and the BBGA itself.


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Stories you might have missed.

Coronavirus impact accumulates, with some growth niches: WINGX Market Tracker

Ready for Action: General and Business aviation tells DoT, "available to assist in any way possible"

COVID-19: European business aviation under threat: EBAA calls on EC and Member States to safeguard members' operational and business continuity; cites medevac flights.

ACA, EBAA and BBGA comment on the AAIB Sala accident report

More stories on our Industry tabs at the top of the page.


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And Finally

Hi Fly mission to collect much needed medical supplies from China

With the declaration of a State of Emergency in Portugal to combat the global coronavirus pandemic, Lisbon-headquartered Hi Fly has become the first airline to move positively to help in the crisis with the news that it was making one of its Airbus A340s available to the nation for an emergency flight to China to collect protective masks, goggles, clothing, diagnostic tests, ventilators and other pieces of much needed medical equipment - already in short supply in Portugal and other parts of Europe.

The Hi Fly aircraft, which can carry around 30 tonnes of essential supplies back to Lisbon, departed from Beja Airport, Portugal on Friday, to Guangzhou in China, where it loaded the life-saving supplies before returning to Portugal.

To guarantee that the flight was undertaken, Hi Fly declined all profits from the mission, and also, via its philanthropic partner The Mirpuri Foundation, made a 100,000 euros donation to the costs of the mission.

Hi-Fly Airbus A340

Hi Fly Airbus A340

Hi Fly and Mirpuri Foundation Founder and President Paulo Mirpuri said: “Our intention is only to help the people of Portugal prevail in what could be a difficult battle against this worrying virus. We are grateful to our air crews who have undertaken this challenging task, to assist with this mission to collect much needed medical supplies.”

"As the leading wet lease airline operating worldwide, we will continue to play a role where we see that we are able to help.”

Hi Fly is an EASA and IOSA certified and FAA approved carrier that operates a large fleet of Airbus aircraft, the A320, A330, A340 and A380 families, exclusively available for wet lease worldwide. Wet Lease - the supply of aircraft and crew, maintenance and insurance - is Hi Fly’s core business and has been developed with unmatched operational expertise over the last 15 years.


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