Volume 2, Number 07 -- April 14, 2004

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The Top Headlines From AVweb's Expanded Business News Coverage At AVweb's Business NewsWire.

BUMPY RIDE AT NBAA...
Officials and staff at the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) have been hard at work putting the organization's membership at ease and gearing up for a second presidential talent search in less than a year after what has been a tumultuous couple of weeks. For those just joining this saga, a brief recap is probably in order:

  • Late in the week of March 23, longtime NBAA media relations manager Cassandra Bosco announced her intention to leave the association and form her own communications firm.
  • On March 30, the association's senior vice president, operations, Bob Blouin, announced his intention to resign.
  • On Thursday, April 1, the NBAA issued a press release announcing the departure of new President and CEO Shelley Longmuir and decisions by both Blouin and Bosco to remain at the association.
  • The same April 1 press release also announced the departure of Bob Warren, executive vice president and COO, who was hired by Longmuir.
  • Also on April 1, Chairman Donald E. Baldwin took over as NBAA interim president and CEO. A search committee, headed by NBAA Vice Chairman Ken Emerick, was formed to begin work on identifying a new president and CEO.
The rapid-fire developments came during a scheduled meeting of the association's board. Since then, NBAA staff and board members have gone out of their way to reassure the association's membership that they are back to work. A public letter to all NBAA members signed by Baldwin noted, "You should know that this is a resilient group of professionals, most with very long service to the Association. In part because of that experience, the business of NBAA continues uninterrupted, with some shifting of responsibilities." More...

IMAGINE YOURSELF IN A NEW PIPER AIRCRAFT FLYING OVER THE GREEK ISLES
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...LONGMUIR'S TAKE...
For her part, Longmuir attempted to counter many of those observations in a prepared statement of her own, as previously reported by AVweb and dated April 1, the day of her departure. According to her statement, she had a “difference in vision for leadership” of the association, something with which no one disagrees. "I am proud of the progress I made at as President and CEO and take pride in accomplishing key goals for the organization and its members," she said in her statement. Additionally, she added that she "was able to establish sound financial footing for the organization," although the NBAA has seen substantial growth in its staff and its industry-leading trade show over the last 10-15 years and is not known to have financial troubles of any kind. For example, under former president Jack Olcott, NBAA membership more than doubled -- from 3,076 companies in 1992 to more than 7,300 by late 2002 -- and convention attendance almost doubled, from 17,312 attendees in 1992 to nearly 30,000 for the 2002 event. More...

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...AS SEARCH FOR PREZ BEGINS ANEW
Meanwhile, back at the ranch and in what must seem like déjà vu all over again, the NBAA's board has formed a new search committee and retained an executive search firm -- the same one they used to hire Longmuir -- to come up with a new president. Toward that end, the NBAA has established a page on its Web site to obtain "the advice and counsel of NBAA Members regarding qualifications or persons the [presidential search] Committee should consider for this position." The Web page was announced in an April 7 press release. At AVweb's deadline for this issue of Business AVflash, the association did not have any details on the activity generated by members through that Web page, but noted that response had been "good." More...

THE PILOT INSURANCE CENTER (PIC) IS YOUR BEST CHOICE!
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CESSNA UPDATE: CJ3 EQUIPMENT, PERFORMANCE
Cessna Aircraft Company announced earlier this month two upgrades to the forthcoming Citation CJ3 model: an improved standard-equipment package and increased payload. According to the company, all Citation CJ3s will now come equipped with a standard FMS performance database making takeoff and landing performance data more readily accessible, while V-speeds will be calculated and posted to the primary flight display. According to the company, Cessna's announcement means the CJ3 will be the only aircraft in its class with such equipment delivered as standard. Meanwhile, the same standard-equipment, full-fuel payload will be approximately 70 pounds greater than projected when the aircraft was announced in 2002. The CJ3's revised full-fuel payload has increased from 800 to 870 pounds. More...

YOU TOO CAN BE A WINNER WITH SCHEYDEN, AVIATION'S FINEST EYEWEAR!
"I was surprised that I won, and even more surprised at the quality of these glasses!" said recent AVweb winner Ted Weiner of Massachusetts. A pair of Scheydens will be given away every other week to a lucky AVweb winner — a retail value up to $395! The unique flip-up design has become the choice of pilots who demand quality and function in every aspect of aviation. Handmade titanium frames, quality lenses, a Rosewood case, plush micro-fiber bag and cloth are standard equipment on all styles. For more information (and to register to win), go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/scheyden/biz.

ECLIPSE OUTSOURCES AIRFRAME COMPONENTS
Eclipse Aviation Corporation announced earlier this month long-term contracts with two firms that will manufacture major components of the company's forthcoming Eclipse 500 microjet. According to Eclipse, Ducommun AeroStructures in California will manufacture all of the fuselage and cockpit skin panels for the airplane while Empresa Nacional de Aeronáutica (ENAER) in Chile will be responsible for the complete nose assembly. “The selection of Ducommun and ENAER reflects Eclipse’s strategy of seeking out the best suppliers worldwide,” said Vern Raburn, president and CEO of Eclipse Aviation. More...

FLIGHTMAX EX500 WITH INTEGRATED DATALINK-TRAINING SOFTWARE NOW AVAILABLE
Avidyne's FlightMax EX500 provides the best value MFD/Datalink solution available for G.A. And it's the easiest to use. To prove it, Avidyne has put together a new FlightMax EX500 trainer which allows you to "fly" user-defined flight plans and retrieve "datalinked" graphical weather and TFRs all along the route — and randomly access virtually all pages and functions of the EX500, just as you would on the real product. Download your no-cost EX500 Training Software at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avidyne/biz.

MERCURY AIR CENTERS NOW UNDER ALLIED CAPITAL UMBRELLA
How much is an FBO chain worth? Well, Allied Capital Corporation's recent deal to purchase Mercury Air Centers Inc., the FBO chain serving 19 airports around the U.S., rang the cash register at $81 million, according to a press release from Allied Capital. The sale closed on April 12 after its original announcement on Oct. 28, 2003. Meanwhile, a press release from Mercury Air Group Inc., the FBO chain's parent company, valued the transaction at "only" $76,300,000, subject to adjustment. Mercury Air Centers comprise the nation's third-largest wholly owned fixed base operations. More...

OURPLANE FRACTIONAL OWNERS BECOME MORE PROFICIENT WITH ADVANCED TRAINING
OurPLANE Fractional Aircraft Ownership is the #1 world leader in offering brand-new Cessna, Cirrus, and Raytheon aircraft at a fraction of the cost of sole aircraft ownership. OurPLANE customers will now be offered training from ElectronicFlight Solutions, including GPS and avionics training packages. Another safety benefit from OurPLANE, where low-cost aircraft ownership is GUARANTEED! Locations throughout California, Texas, New York, and Connecticut. Call (877) 775-2631 and mention this AVflash, or go online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/ourplane/biz.

CESSNA CELEBRATES CJ2 MILESTONE
Cessna Aircraft Company last week announced delivery of the 200th Citation CJ2. The Citation CJ2 was introduced at the 1998 NBAA convention, and first deliveries occurred in November 2000. The 100th CJ2 was delivered in August 2002; to date, the CJ2 fleet has flown over 80,000 flight hours. Unijet, a leading European charter operation based at the Le Bourget Airport in France, is the operator receiving the 200th example. More...

TSA WATCH I: FAA'S FOOT-DRAGGING
This issue's TSA Watch feature includes not one, but two items of interest for readers. The first item is to update readers about something on which AVweb's Business AVflash has reported before: the FAA's failure to comply with the law. As AVweb reported on March 17, the FAA still hasn't submitted a required report to Congress "containing an explanation of the need for" the Washington ADIZ. More...

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OURPLANE ORDERS TEN NEW 2004 CIRRUS SR22 G2 AIRCRAFT FOR CUSTOMERS
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WINGX FROM HILTON SOFTWARE IS NOW 30% OFF — JUST $39.99
Hilton Software is now offering WingX, the leading Pocket PC Aviation product, for 30% off. Having just added AC61-65D (endorsements) and NWS Contractions to the document database, WingX already provides fast access to FARs 1, 43, 61, 91, 119, 141, and 830, as well as the Pilot/Controller Glossary. WingX does graphical W&B calculations; it'll even tell you how much the wind is helping or hindering your progress! WingX has easy-to-use E6B and sunrise/sunset pages. Ever forget when your medical is due or when your BFR expires? Let WingX keep track of these dates and many more! We're pleased to offer WingX to your for just $39.99 — that's 30% below the normal price. The demo is free — download it now at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/hiltonsoftware/biz.

CALCULATE OPERATING COSTS WITH THE INTERACTIVE AIRCRAFT BUDGET ANALYZER
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TSA WATCH II: TSA'S DCA PLAN
The second item has to do with the agency's draft plan to once again allow non-scheduled aircraft access at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA). As AVweb reported last month, David M. Stone, the TSA's acting administrator, told Congress that his agency "is devising a security plan that will allow general aviation and charter operations to resume at DCA." More...

WATCH YOUR INBOX...
...the next issue of AVweb's BizAVflash will be e-mailed to you on April 28. More...

_____________________________________
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Business AVflash is a twice-monthly summary of the latest business aviation
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Internet's Aviation Magazine and News Service. http://www.avweb.com

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Today's issue written by Joseph E. (Jeb) Burnside:
http://www.avweb.com/contact/authors.html#jburnside
AVweb's editorial team: http://avweb.com/contact/authors.html.

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