AVwebBiz - Volume 5, Number 14

April 18, 2007

By The AVweb Editorial Staff
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Hawker Beechcraft Seeking Overseas Growth back to top 

International Sales Drive Strategy for Hawker Beechcraft

The head of Hawker Beechcraft Corp's international sales, Sean McGeough, has gotten busy with trips planned for the U.K., Dubai, Brazil, New Delhi, and Brazil, as the March 26 formed company gears up to expand its international presence. The company has broken the world into three major areas of growth -- Asia, Europe and Latin America. With government obstacles still a substantial barrier in Asia, the company expects the other two regions to see more immediate growth. The push is intended to add increased support for the company's more than 100 sales and service centers worldwide. Hawker Beechcraft already expects to announce a partner for an FBO and service center in India within the next two months and hopes to follow suit in Russia.

All of this addresses sales trends that have seen international demand increase (thanks in part to a weakening dollar coupled with increased global wealth) from a 25 percent market share ten years ago to close to 40 percent today. As analysts conjure numbers closer to 50 percent sales attributed to areas outside North America within the next ten years, Hawker Beechcraft intends to respond with customer-centric and therefore region-centric designs. Such aircraft would be tailored to perform with appropriate range and capacities for their target markets. Jim Schuster, Hawker Beechcraft's chief executive, told The Wichita Eagle, "We're doing it country by country, region by region."

Garmin StreetPilot c330 Auto GPS Special — $259.99
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The Latest Merger News back to top 

JetDirect Aviation and Sentient Jet to Merge

JetDirect Aviation LLC, a full-service private jet operator, and Sentient Jet Inc., a provider of private jet memberships, last week announced their intent to merge operations. The combined company will offer "a compelling alternative to the fractional ownership model." The combined company aims to offer private jet customers a range of flexible products that combine a comprehensive charter and aircraft management company's integrated portfolio of the most successful, highest-quality operators with a program that transcends the limitations of jet-specific fractional jet ownership and fractional jet cards. The idea is "to provide the most flexible, convenient and economically attractive guaranteed availability product on the market," according to a press release announcing the planned merger.

JetDirect Chief Executive Officer Gregory Campbell will take position as CEO of the combined company. Steven Hankin, current chief executive officer of Sentient Jet, will serve as president and chief operating officer of the combined company. The company will maintain 110 aircraft under management, while allowing private jet travelers access to "the largest FAA Part 135 managed aircraft fleet strategically located across the U.S."

The Best Choice for the Small Business Owner
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Online B2B Services from LegFind back to top 

LegFind Launches Online Service for Charters Ops, Brokers

LegFind.com is offering a new service that enables charter operators and the wholesale marketplace the ability to post block availability and rates. LegFind Logistics will then match operator availability to trips in the LegFind database, plus others from the wholesale community. The service manages all logistics and details from quotes to passenger meals and ground transportation for any period of availability provided. Nathan McKelvey, CEO of LegFind's parent company, Jets International, said the service allows operators to approve or disapprove recommended bookings and "provide the wholesale charter market with a one-stop shopping alternative."

The new department will be staffed largely by former Swift Air LLC employees, headed by Marlene Purswell (former vice president of Swift Air). LegFind.com offers operators and brokers "the ability to post, view, search for, and bid on hundreds of domestic and international trip itineraries listed daily."

Fly in Ultra-Comfort with LightSPEED Headsets:
Discover the most comfortable headsets in the industry. The in-the-ear Mach 1 weighs less than 1 oz., and the full-size Thirty 3G just under 16 oz. and uses soft conform-foam ear cushions. Try a LightSPEED headset with a 30-day money back guarantee. To order, contact a LightSPEED dealer or call (800) 332-2421 (PST, business hours). For more information and to view a video clip, click here.
Air Taxi Service, Special Conditions for Dassault back to top 

ImagineAir — A Cirrus SR22 Travel Option

Joining the ranks of SATSair (operating in the southeast), Open Air (operating from the D.C. area) and others, ImagineAir is now offering its own version of air taxi service (also for the Southeast). ImagineAir uses a fleet of new Cirrus SR22-GTS aircraft and is positioning itself as an alternative to both long-distance driving and commercial air travel. The company's patrons "can visit clients in several different cities in a single day, giving them more productive time at the office as well as more quality time at home with their families," says the company.

FlightCard options are available, offering discounts up to 20 percent. But for those interested in raw, non-discounted numbers, ImagineAir says it can fly three passengers from Atlanta to Charlotte for a business meeting, then to Hilton Head (for golf) and back to Atlanta in time for dinner at just over $500 per person. The company intends to expand its service and range in 2008, when it expects to offer flights in Eclipse 500 aircraft as well as the SR22s.

FAA Notes Falcon 7X Special Conditions

The Dassault Falcon 7X will include an arsenal of technological wizardry much of which will be applied through its role as the "first application of a fly-by-wire primary flight control system in an airplane primarily intended for private/corporate use," according to the FAA. And so, the FAA believes that and associated features of the aircraft are beyond the foresight of the FAA's airworthiness standards for transport category aircraft. With technological advances steaming ahead such recognition is not so unusual, but the FAA is trying to keep up and so is offering additional safety standards "necessary to establish a level of safety equivalent to that established by existing airworthiness standards."

The action addresses the 7X's side stick controllers, sudden engine stoppage, electronic flight control system and Flight Envelope Protection, which among other things offer normal load factor limiting; pitch, roll and high speed limiting functions; control surface position awareness; low energy awareness; and excessive angle of attack protection. The 7X will be powered by three aft-mounted Pratt & Whitney PW307A high bypass ratio turbofan engines. It will have a maximum takeoff weight of 69,000 pounds, a maximum certified altitude of 51,000 feet and a range of 5,950 nautical miles.

For the whole story, in the FAA's own words, click through. The company announced in February it expected certification of the 7X in April. NetJets Europe has signed up for 24 Falcon 7X aircraft -- worth U.S. $1.1 billion -- with deliveries scheduled to begin in 2008 and running through 2014. At least 150 other copies of the 7X airframe are on order with Dassault.

XM WX Satellite Weather Uses a Continuous Satellite Broadcast to Deliver Graphical Weather Data to the Cockpit
Pilots view and interact with the data — including radar, winds, METARs, lightning, and more — on compatible MFDs, EFBs, and PDAs from a wide range of industry partners, as well as on laptop PCs. The situational awareness afforded by XM WX Satellite Weather allows pilots to enjoy their journeys with more confidence and comfort than ever before. For more information, please visit XMWXweather.com.
Deliveries and Certifications back to top 

Cessna Citation Mustang Deliveries to Resume

Deliveries of Cessna's Citation Mustang may resume following the FAA's approval of a fix for a software glitch in the aircraft's Garmin G100 avionics suite. The first Mustang was delivered Nov. 22, with the second delivered into demo service last week and showcased on the grounds at Sun 'n Fun in Lakeland, Fla., this week. Cessna says it's on track to deliver 40 Mustangs this year with further deliveries planned for this month. "The production facility is ramping up," Roger Whyte, senior vice president of sales and marketing, told AVweb this week.

As AVweb reported Monday, the Mustang is making its international debut on Thursday at the biannual Aero Friedrichshafen general aviation trade show in Germany. Cessna expects to obtain European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) certification for the Pratt & Whitney Canada PW615F-powered twinjet later this year in time for the first delivery in Europe.

Comp Air Aviation Seeks Certification for Comp Air 12

Longtime manufacturer of high-performance, heavy-hauling, kit-built turboprop aircraft, Comp Air Aviation says it is seeking certification for its 1,650-hp, Honeywell TPE331-14GR powered CA12. The aircraft is scheduled to arrive this week at the Sun 'n Fun Fly-in at Lakeland, Fla. The "all new, carbon composite turbine" design will offer eight-plus-two seating, a 300-knot cruise at 30,000 feet and better than 2,500-nautical-mile range. All of that will be packaged in a 41-foot 5-inch body with wings that span 48 feet stressed to positive six and negative four G's. Occupants will enjoy a 21-foot-long cabin that's 70 inches tall and 65 inches wide. Up front, pilots should see takeoff distance (at a gross weight of 10,800 pounds) near 900 feet, according to the company.

With its first flight on April 15, the aircraft saw "no difficulties other than minor adjustments, it was a complete success," said company owner Ron Lueck. FAA certification for the $2.5 million Comp Air 12 is expected in early 2010 and Comp Air is now accepting $100,000 deposits for the cabin-class turboprop.

Columbia Introduces 2007 Models
The 2007 Columbias have arrived. Fresh for this year are new, dynamic paint schemes for both the Columbia 350 and 400, as well as a host of thoughtful and unique features for the discerning aircraft owner. See how your new Columbia will look with the interactive online Paint Selector. Just go online and click on the "Paint Your Passion" icon.
Flying in Style back to top 

Embraer Displays Phenom 300 at Sun 'n Fun

The annual Sun 'n Fun gathering in Lakeland, Fla., has come a long way since its origins as an Experimental Aircraft Association fly-in back in 1974, when classic aircraft, sport and antique aircraft were gathered. Embraer's Phenom 300 arrived this year in mock-up form. "Guests will be delighted with the jet's comfort and space and to learn about its outstanding performance and operational advantages," said Embraer Vice President of Executive Jets Sales & Marketing for the U.S., Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean, Ernest Edwards.

The offering is Embraer's stab at "best in class" (read: expect luxury and performance ... and few discount incentives) accommodations for up to nine occupants and 76 cubic feet of their favorite travel gear across up to 1800 nautical miles at up to 45,000 feet and Mach 0.78. Not your average homebuilt (and not Embraer's smallest jet), the $6.65 million Phenom 300 is expected to enter service fully certified in mid-2009. In that year, Embraer predicts deliveries of Phenom 100 (the smaller version) and Phenom 300 jets together to reach 120-150 units.

Starling Offers In-Flight Wireless Options

To back the surge for high-speed airborne internet access, Starling Advanced Communication announced it will present at the Aircraft Interiors Expo 2007 (held this week in Hamburg, Germany) "the world's fastest low-profile, fuselage mounted antenna," according to Net4now.com. The 16-inch-diameter by 4-inch-tall appendage is part of the MIJET series of antennas and designed as a bidirectional Ku-band antenna for business jets promising true broadband bit rates for their VIP passengers.

Technically, the antenna is based on what Starling calls "CoMPA" (Coherent Multi-Panel Antenna), which allows for both small size, plus transmission and reception at true broadband bit rates (up to 1.25 Mbps for transmission and 10-15 Mbps for reception), according to the company.

Avidyne TAS600 — Because Two Antennas Are Better than One!
Whether you're flying in a busy terminal area, navigating a long cross-country, or hovering over a city, seeing and avoiding traffic requires having the right information in real time. Avidyne's TAS600 Traffic Advisory Systems, with dual-antenna technology, provide significantly improved signal coverage and target tracking, enabling faster updates and enhanced performance over single-antenna systems, for maximum safety. Avidyne's TAS600 Series makes active-surveillance traffic alerting affordable. Visit Avidyne online.
News in Brief back to top 

On the Fly ...

Embraer's Legacy 600 has been certified to operate at Cannes-Mandelieu, in Cannes, France. The aircraft is one of the largest business jets to operate from either Cannes-Mandelieu or London City airports ...

The Middle East Business Aviation Association is backing a summit to be held in Dubai April 23-24 promoting very light jets ...

A Dassault spokesman bought 24,000 inflation-proof postal stamps "for a direct-mail program for a company I work for," according to Philly.com ...

Certain Falcon 900DX and Falcon 2000EX EASy aircraft are missing rivets from the skin panels on each side of the fuselage between frames 9 and 10. "This situation affects the structural integrity of the fuselage," according to the FAA, which has issued a http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/2422/01jan20071800/edocket.access.gpo.gov/2007/E7-6932.htm " target="_blank">proposed Airworthiness Directive ...

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.

DA40 Diamond Star a Fleet Favorite
Airline Transport Professionals, Beijing PanAm, Empire Aviation, Middle Tennessee State University, Utah Valley State College, and Utah State University have all selected the G1000-equipped DA40 Diamond Star. For value, efficiency, and safety, the Diamond Aircraft DA40 is the fleet favorite. For more information, click here.
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.

Today's issue was written by Contributing Editor Glenn Pew (bio).

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Shiny side up, okay?

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