AVwebBiz - Volume 6, Number 8

February 20, 2008

By The AVweb Editorial Staff
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Singapore Air Show: Exclusive AVwebBiz Coverage back to top 
Sponsor Announcement

Singapore Air Show Coverage

The Singapore Air Show opened Wednesday on a 30-hectare site next to Singapore’s Changi Airport, housing a 40,000-square-meter exhibition hall, stuffed to the brim with exhibitors. AVweb correspondent Liz Moscrop reports there’s plenty of heavy iron out on the static and the major manufacturers are out in force in the chalet lines. The media room is buzzing and there are announcements throughout the day, with press officers literally coming in and shouting for journalists to join their conferences.

Highlights from Day One

Eclipse Breaks into India
There were a couple of big GA announcements here yesterday. Eclipse Aviation has broken into the Indian market and will supply 10 Eclipse 500 very light jets to New Delhi-based Club One Air. The first four aircraft are set for delivery this year, with the remainder due in 2009. According to Club One Air Managing Director Manav Singh the market in India is ripe for charter. "We plan to get the middle class of the country to start chartering aircraft," he said. Although operations will initially be in Delhi and Mumbai, Singh believes there are a further 25 smaller towns that may use the service. Club One Air may also support Eclipse 500 operators in the region and distribute the jet in India.

C-Series Alive and Kicking
Further up the food chain, Bombardier has said the C-Series project was never dead. Speaking at the show yesterday, Trung Ngo, VP of marketing and communications, said that the manufacturer must launch the C-Series program in 2008 to meet its targeted entry-into-service date of 2013.

60-Ship Order for Boeing
Boeing announced a new firm 60-airplane order from two Indonesian airlines -- Lion Air and Garuda Indonesia. Lion Air has taken 56 B737-900ERs, while Garuda added four 777-300ERs to its converted order for six 777-200ERs.

Rockwell Collins Upgrade for Air Asia
Air Asia announced that it is to add Rockwell Collins avionics to 60 new Airbus A320s, with options for 40 more. Its low-cost sister Air Asia X also took the avionics for its 15 Airbus A330 aircraft.

$42M Expansion for Rolls Royce
Rolls Royce’s Singaporean maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) facility, Singapore Aero Engine Services (SAESL), is set to build a new 12,000-square-meter, two-story building in a $42 million investment. The new building will become operational in June 2009 and increase SAESL’s total floor space to 30,000 square meters, giving it the ability to service 250 engines per year.

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Cessna, Hawker Keeping Busy in Singapore back to top 

Singapore Fractional Orders 40 Citations, Hawkers

The order books for Cessna and Hawker Beechcraft fattened considerably on the first day of the Singapore Air Show with what is being described as the largest business jet order ever placed in Asia. Singapore-based Bjets, a start-up fractional, ordered 20 Citation CJ2 aircraft from Cessna worth about $150 million as well as nine Hawker 850XPs and 11 Hawker 900XPs worth a total of $450 million. The company also has options on another 10 Hawker aircraft. Deliveries will start in May and continue for several years. The company will operate throughout Asia. It is partly owned by the Tata Group from India, which already operates business jets for customers of its high-end hotels in India.

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Embraer Confirms: Biz Is Big in Asia back to top 

Asia To Lead Aviation Growth: Embraer

Embraer released its annual crystal-ball summary of the commercial aviation business in advance of the Singapore Air Show and it supports what the Brazilian company and virtually all its competitors have been saying all year. Asia is the next big thing for big iron sales. “Embraer’s current forecast indicates that the aircraft demand in the region will be 25 percent higher than the previous estimates. The Asia Pacific region and China will represent 17 percent of worldwide aircraft deliveries over the next 20 years,” the report says. China, in particular, will see growth rates much higher than the rest of the world. But Embraer says there’s a serious imbalance, equipment-wise, in the emerging market because most airlines have purchased big, high-capacity airliners while the regional market is under-served. Market forces, it predicts, will lead to a boom in orders for 30- to 120-seat airliners, a sector almost exclusively served by Embraer and Bombardier. The report predicts that at least 1,270 aircraft in this size range, worth $42 billion, will be delivered in the region over the next 20 years. The company says the largest demand will be for aircraft with fewer than 90 seats. Bombardier and Embraer can’t expect to have the market to themselves for long, however. China is developing its own modern version of the DC-9 called the ARJ21-700 and Sukhoi is planning a 75- to 95-seat airliner called the Superjet. Engine tests have been completed on the Superjet and it may fly this month. Bombardier also wants to get into the market for aircraft with more than 100 seats and is in talks with China’s AVIC to collaborate on the project.

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The Latest on Adam back to top 

Adam Aircraft Declares Bankruptcy

To no one’s surprise, Adam Aircraft quietly filed for Chapter 7 (liquidation) bankruptcy last Friday and the next question is who will be in the running for the assets. In news releases prior to the suspension of operations last week, Adam claimed to have orders for its A700 very light jet and A500 piston twin in the order of $1 billion, although it’s questionable how firm many of those orders were. But the company was approaching certification of the A700 (it completed environmental tests in December) and the A500 was in limited production. No details have been released on the timing of the bankruptcy auction or who might be involved. Regardless of who might try to pick up the assets, the plundering of the company’s skilled labor began shortly after the company suspended operations. Cirrus Design held a meeting in Denver last week to see if it could lure workers to Duluth, something it’s been having problems with recently. The shortage of engineers, in particular, is hampering work on the company’s jet project and light sport aircraft. Bombardier has also been trying to attract workers.

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Q400s to Fight Fire? back to top 

Air Tanker Based On Bombardier Q400

A Canadian company has developed an air tanker conversion for the popular Bombardier Q400 turboprop airliner. Cascade Aerospace, of Abbotsford, B.C., says the aircraft combines speed, payload and “loads of power” to make it a modern replacement for aging tankers. The aircraft will drop up to 2,600 gallons of retardant on a fire with a computer-controlled system that ensures an even drop pattern. Up front, the crew flies in air-conditioned comfort in front of a glass panel with all the modern bells and whistles. Cascade says the Pratt & Whitney Canada PW150A engines put out more than 5,000 hp and that gives the aircraft the power to maneuver in any terrain and to get to the fire in a hurry at 340 knots. It can also operate on unpaved airfields and has its own APU for self-sufficient operation in the field. When it’s not fighting fires, it can be quickly converted to a 64-seat passenger aircraft or a cargo plane with a payload of 19,900 pounds. Because the aircraft is in service worldwide, spares are easy to get and pilot training is available all over the world.

Diamond DA40 A Fleet Favorite
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JetCombo Offers More Options for Air Taxis back to top 

JetCombo's Take On Travel

Two entrepreneurs have developed JetCombo.com to take their stab at the airline hub-and-spoke system by offering a new online point-to-point trip planner designed to tap into "the other 5,400 public airports" in the U.S. JetCombo mines a database of aircraft and operators ranging from jets to small propeller aircraft through an online interface that allows users to select their departure and destination while JetCombo returns its most efficient route. AVweb tried a search using JetCombo.com to schedule a flight for two people flying economy class, for a Friday to Monday trip booked two weeks in advance. Our query seeking flights from San Diego-area Carlsbad Palomar Airport (KCRQ) to Georgetown (Texas) Municipal Airport (KGTU) yielded options ranging in cost from roughly $300 per person (with one stop) flying Continental Airlines to just shy of $5400 including two guests who would fly "free" non-stop in a Piper Malibu, to more than $20,000 (seven "free" guests) on a Falcon 2000. One-way travel times ranged from about two and a half hours to nearly eight hours. You'll pay more for speed ... and for carbon credits, if you want them.

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Biz Exclusive Audio:
How to Succeed in Point-to-Point Air Travel
back to top 

XO Jet's Nick Solinger Discusses Business in the Era of Private Jet Transport

File Size 7.1 MB / Running Time 7:44

Podcast Index | How to Listen | Subscribe Via RSS

With the frustration of delays and flight cancellations in the airline industry hitting new heights, the various styles of private aircraft service providers are enjoying record business. One of the fastest growing is XO Jet, and the company's chief strategy officer Nick Solinger says it's all part of a natural market evolution. He explained his company's success to AVwebBiz editor Russ Niles.

Click here to listen. (7.1 MB, 7:44)

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Who's Where back to top 

Kyle Varley has joined Aspen Avionics as vice president of manufacturing. He came from S-Tec, where he was vice president of manufacturing operations.

Hawker Beechcraft has beefed up its sales team in the Middle East and Asia. Dan Keady will head up the division. Jason Liao has been appointed as regional vice president for China and S.E. Asia, while Jeff Anastas, Allan Stanton and Brett Carlson are regional sales directors for India, Africa, Middle East and Australia, respectively.

Peter Ring
Peter Ring has been appointed by Avidyne as an inside sales representative, looking after the company's client base in the Northeast and Southeast. His sales background is in the automotive field but he’s a pilot with a tailwheel endorsement.

Tom Toth
Tom Toth has been named operations manager for Executive Beechcraft's three Kansas City locations. He was promoted from customer relations manager and is also and A and P.

Get a promotion or a new job? Your colleagues want to know about it, and AVwebBiz can get the word out. Drop us a line about the staff appointment, with a nice recent photo, and we'll do our best to include it in our new section, "Who's Where." The items will be permanently archived on AVweb for future reference, too.


AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learn back to top 

Exclusive Video: Amazing Feats of Aviation — DHL Baghdad

Original, Exclusive Videos from AVweb | Reader-Submitted & Viral Videos

Recounting one of the most impressive feats in recent aviation history, AVweb video editor Glenn Pew recalls the circumstances of the DHL A300 shot by a surface-to-air missile over Baghdad. The crew successfully landed the aircraft without the ability to manipulate any control surfaces. (Note: The aircraft shown in simulation is a Boeing 777, not an Airbus A300.)

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Related Content:
Our original news report
PowerPoint slide show (.pps)

The Top Reporter on Our Crack Staff ... Is You! back to top 

AVweb's Newstips Address ...

Our best stories start with you. If you've heard something that 130,000 pilots might want to know about, tell us. Submit news tips via email to newstips@avweb.com. You're a part of our team ... often, the best part.

Names Behind the News back to top 

Meet the AVwebBiz Team

AVwebBiz is a weekly summary of the latest business aviation news, articles, products, features, and events featured on AVweb, the internet's aviation magazine and news service.

The AVwebBiz team is:

Timothy Cole

Editorial Director, Aviation Publications
Paul Bertorelli

Russ Niles

Contributing Editors
Mary Grady
Glenn Pew

Features Editor
Kevin Lane-Cummings

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