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AEA Opens In Nashville: Sales Up

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As the Aircraft Electronics Association opens its 57th annual convention in Nashville today, it reports that avionics sales were up 6.9 percent in 2013 over the previous year. In this AVweb video, AEA president Paula Derks says total worldwide sales for general aviation avionics amounted to $2.42 billion and trends for 2014 look similarly positive so far. AEA’s analysis revealed that the retrofit avionics market is nearly as large as the OEM segment, with $1.1 billion in total revenues compared to $1.3 billion for the OEM for forward-fit side.

Some 140 exhibitors are at the show and Derks expects 23 new product introductions across of range of market segments. As it has been for the past two years, ADS-B-related products are expected to be a big draw as the equipage mandate draws ever nearer in 2020.

Derks says AEA has partnered with the NextGen GA Fund, a private capital fund with government loan guarantees to provide inexpensive financing for NextGen-related equipment, and not just ADS-B installations. The NextGen fund will initially have about $550 million in capital, but will eventually support as much as $1.3 billion in recurring financial services over the next decade. Given that some 157,000 general aviation aircraft will require ADS-B to operate in the national airspace system, the NextGen fund might find plenty of customers, according to Derks.

AEA’s partnering with the NextGen fund will allow shops to quickly and easily access financing for their customers needing ADS-B. Michael Dyment, the NextGen Funds manager, said Congress approved the loan guarantees as a means of protecting its $40 billion investment in the NextGen system, which promises to all but reinvent how the NAS operates and is managed. The loan guarantees will allow the NextGen fund to offering private-sector financing at interest rates slightly below those of commercial banks. For more, see NexaCapital.com.

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