World Fuel Shows Off Air Elite FBOs

Miami, Fla.-based global fuel provider World Fuel Services is once again attending LABACE (Booth 2006) to highlight the 10 regional members of its sponsored Air Elite FBO Network. Founded in 2011 from the remnants of the Avitat Network, Air Elite has grown to 79 locations worldwide, each of which must meet and maintain a number of airport, facility and service quality standards to qualify for membership.

In Brazil, the network’s lone representative is also the country’s largest FBO. World-Way Aviation is one of several service providers at São Paulo-area Sorocaba Executive Airport, a hub for OEM maintenance centers. Opened in 2016 at a cost of $15 million, it offers a 30,000-sq-ft (2,787-sq-m) terminal with dedicated VIP lounge, conference room, crew lounge and rest suites, fitness center, observation balcony, and a nearly 100,000-sq-ft hangar, large enough to house nine Embraer Lineage 1000s.

FBO Aerocardal at Santiago, Chile’s Comodoro Arturo Merino Benitez International Airport was the first service provider in Latin America to be accepted to the network back in 2014. Its recently renovated facility has a 7,700-sq-ft terminal, with separate executive passenger lounges for international and domestic boarding, customs and immigration service, concierge, crew rest area and showers, along with more than 30,000 sq ft of hangar space.

Located at Quito’s Mariscal Sucre International Airport, Ecuacentair provides onsite passenger security screening, passenger and crew lounges, shower facilities and flight planning stations. This summer the company will begin construction on a 3,000-sq-m (32,290-sq-ft) hangar. When completed by the end of the year, it will be the largest on the airport.

Colombian service provider Caribbean Support and Flight Services (CSFS) operates an Air Elite Diamond FBO at Ernesto Cortissoz International Airport in Barranquilla. The Cartagena-based company also operates FBOs at Santa Marta/Simón Bolívar International Airport, Medellin’s Rionegro/José María Córdova International Airport, Alfonso Bonilla Aragón International Airport in Cali, and at San Andres Island Gustavo Rojas Pinilla Airport.

Cabo San Lucas International Airport, the only private international airport in Mexico, offers a family-owned FBO, which delivers personal service to its customers. It offers an 8,100-sq-ft terminal with concierge services, refreshments, flight planning, immigration and customs processing, 24-hour security, along with a new 32,000-sq-ft hangar that can shelter aircraft up to a Boeing 737, business center, and complete ground handling capability including fueling.

The Air Elite Network is well represented among the islands of the Caribbean, with locations in Puerto Rico and the Bahamas (Jet Aviation San Juan and Jet Aviation Nassau), Turks and Caicos (Provo Jet Center), Curaçao (Jet Centre Curaçao), and the U.S. Virgin Islands (St. Thomas Jet Center).

Air Elite’s standards are audited to ensure consistency across the network. In June it held its annual retreat and Ritz-Carlton customer service training session, drawing members from around the globe, allowing them to engage in continued training, best practice sharing, strategic planning, and development.


Source: AIN Online (08/14/18)


Dassault Adds Capabilities to Sorocaba Service Center

 Underscoring the importance of the Brazilian market, Dassault Aviation is continuing to build up capabilities at its company-owned service center at Sorocaba Airport in São Paulo to accommodate an expanding customer base and fleet in the region. Remy St-Martin, who stepped in earlier this year as senior v-p and COO of Dassault Aircraft Services, said the center, which next year will celebrate its 10thanniversary, has also expanded its services and outreach throughout Brazil and the Latin America area as customer requirements have evolved and grown.

In the past year, the Sorocaba center, known locally as Falcon do Brasil, has added tooling for Falcon 7X and 2000 B-checks for Brazil-registered aircraft. This represents an investment of more than $100,000 in tools, along with training. The center has long conducted A-checks and St-Martin called B-checks the next step in its progression of support in the region. This enables customers to remain more local rather than travel out of the country for the more extensive, longer-term inspections, he said, noting the first B-check has been completed and the customer “was very happy” that it was accomplished closer to home.

Dassault Aviation also brought its Pre-Purchase Evaluation (PPE) program to Sorocaba. Rolled out as a formal program in the past year, PPE is designed to provide potential customers of pre-owned Falcons an experience equivalent to that provided for customers of new aircraft. The program covers a range of services from detailed aircraft evaluations to a complete walkthrough of updates necessary to meet upcoming requirements such as ADS-B Out and Fans-1/A.

Assessments include physical-evaluation records research, systems operational checks, and other comprehensive evaluations. The Dassault support teams further coordinate on propriety modifications and “engineered solutions” designed to keep the existing in-service fleet at the level of new production aircraft.

While the center hadn’t received a number of requests for such services in the past, Dassault brought the program to Sorocaba to assist with the exchange of an aircraft between Brazilian customers, he said. This enabled them to conduct the necessary checks more regionally rather than having to send the aircraft to the U.S. for examination. It also positions the center for a used market that has picked up in the region.

Dassault has steadily invested in the Sorocaba facility since it opened in June 2009, including increasing staffing and stocking millions in spare parts. The 23,000-sq-ft center has been equipped to provide line maintenance and airframe inspections for all Falcon models except the Falcon 10, Falcon 20, and Falcon 200. In addition, the facility is qualified to provide engine maintenance on a suite of engines powering Dassault business jets, including the GE CFE738 on Falcon 2000 variants, Honeywell TFE731 series engines on Falcon 900s, and Pratt & Whitney Canada PW307A (Falcon 7X), PW308C (Falcon 2000), and PW307D (Falcon 8X) models.

Sorocaba further has been equipped to dispatch an AOG team to support Falcons throughout South America. The center has obtained certifications from the FAA, EASA, Brazil, Brazil, Bermuda, and Uruguay to work on aircraft. These certifications come as the center is seeing an increasing number of transient aircraft, St-Martin said, with more flying longer missions.

The long-range aircraft have strong demand in Brazil, in particular. In fact, four of the first fifteen 8Xs delivered went to Brazil. The Sorocaba center—which is led by Gutemberg Silva, who was the center’s first employee—has provided differences training for the technicians to work on the 8X, St-Martin said, but added these technicians have been well prepared for the new model that shares many of the systems as its 7X sibling. “We’ve built a fair amount of aptitude on the 7X,” he said, noting this benefits support for the 8X.

The Falcon 2000 also attracts solid interest, and as such, the French manufacturer brought its 2000LXS along with the 8X for the static display at LABACE.

The display of the 6,450-nm trijet 8X is becoming a mainstay at LABACE, having made its debut at the Latin America show in 2016 shortly after receiving FAA and EASA certification in June of that year. It returned in 2017, months after receiving Brazilian ANAC approval.

While the two in-service Falcon models will be on static, Dassault Aviation (Chalet 5116) is providing a virtual glimpse of its 6X, the recently announced successor to the canceled 5X. The virtual reality display will provide an opportunity to showcase the enhancements the company is incorporating on the PW812D-powered Falcon, which has increased thrust, 300-nm's more range, and a 20-inch larger cabin than the 5X would have had.


Source: AIN Online (08/14/18)


Embraer Opens New Sorocaba Interior Shop

 Embraer Executive Jets has opened a new interior shop at its Sorocaba service center near São Paulo, Brazil. Located at Sorocaba Bertram Luiz Leupolz Airport, the facility provides maintenance services for all of the Embraer business jets, from the Phenom 100EV to the Lineage 1000.

The interior shop provides custom interiors for new jets, as well as refurbishment of older interiors. Products available include carpets; headliners; leather; new veneer and wood varnishing; and flooring products such as stone, wood, vinyl, or leather. Customers can decide on interior materials by reviewing samples at the Sorocaba interior shop and also evaluate various paint schemes.

With Embraer maintenance and interior services both available at the Sorocaba shop, customers can have everything done during one trip, according to Everton Vicente de Lima, general manager of Embraer’s Brazil service center. This includes line maintenance, inspections, and custom interior refurbishment.

The Sorocaba service center is certified to work on aircraft from Brazil, the U.S., Europe, Chile, and Argentina. Embraer has invested about $25 million at Sorocaba, which includes $5 million for equipment and tools.


Source: AIN Online (08/14/18)


Improvements Targeted for Brazil GA Airports

 General aviation (GA) airports in São Paulo state should see improvements, according to Fábio Calloni, superintendent of São Paulo state aviation authority DAESP. The authority manages 20 GA airports, including Sorocaba.

While several new business aviation airports have started with great promise and stalled or disappeared, Sorocaba had quietly but steadily improved and is now home to Embraer, Dassault, Gulfstream, and Pratt & Whitney Canada service centers, as well as FBO World Wide Aviation. Sorocaba’s latest improvement, a control tower, has completed construction, but as Calloni said, “It needs to be installed and operating. We’ve put out a bid to equip the tower and we’ve picked a vendor, but we still have to wait for other bidders to appeal. It has to be approved by [air traffic control body] DECEA, and then we have to hire an operating company or hire operators.” He expects the process to be concluded next year.

Instrument flight rules (IFR) operation is another project for Sorocaba. “With the tower and instrument operation, we will move toward more consistent operations at Sorocaba. These are parallel processes,” Calloni said. Internationalization of the airport, he added, “went to [national civil aviation council] CONAER the week before last. It’s a DAESP project, the first project in the country specifically to internationalize a business aviation airport.” DAESP already has achieved internationalization of the airport at São Carlos, home to LATAM’s main airliner maintenance facility. “Next is enabling customs clearance at the airport, so that any aircraft in the world can come to São Carlos for maintenance. It’s expected for this year. Sorocaba is next.”

Internationalization, Calloni said, “is a rigorous process. CONAER includes representatives of the federal police [immigration], tax authorities [customs], Anvisa [health],“ as well as agricultural quarantine. “All four are in CONAER, and the demands of each must be met for approval. It’s a long process.” The last step, once CONAER has approved, is for DECEA to work out international procedures with its foreign counterparts.


Source: AIN Online (08/14/18)


LABACE Organizers Upbeat on Show, Bizav in Brazil

LABACE organizers offered guarded optimism for business aviation in Brazil as they gave a preview of Latin America's largest business aviation fair, opening Tuesday at Congonhas Airport in São Paulo.

“We hit the low point in 2016, and it's not good now, but it's improving,” said Leonardo Fiuza, chairman of LABACE organizer ABAG (the Brazilian association for general aviation), emphasizing recovery of both the fleet and operations. But Fiuza added, “business aviation reflects business,” and the recovery is still fragile: at the start of 2018, economic growth of 4 percent was expected, but that dropped to 1.5 percent after a national truckers' strike in May. Upcoming presidential elections are also a big unknown, he said.

Even so, attendance is expected to increase at LABACE 2018, as Brazil remains the world's second largest general aviation market. This year's event is expected to host 47 aircraft, about the same as last year, with Embraer bringing its entire lineup and Cirrus bringing the Vision Jet for its first public showing in Brazil. Avic Harbin is not bringing an airplane, but will have a booth to highlight its Y12E and Y12F, with certification still pending in Brazil.

ABAG CEO Flavio Pires explained that despite the physical shift in the space used at Congonhas Airport, the area for aircraft and exhibitors remains the same. Exhibitors once again will occupy the historic hangar, with the static display area shifted away from the avenue. “But the display will still be cozy,” Pires promised. The auditorium is now located beside the exhibits and static display, and will feature a lineup of speakers “in the style of NBAA and in line with the goals in ABAG's charter,” he added. While the static display and exhibition hangar will be open from 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. (8 p.m. on the last day), the auditorium program will start at 10 a.m. On Wednesday and Thursday morning one stage will be dedicated to the medevac market that is emerging in Brazil.

Piracy in aviation will be a theme of the first day, encompassing not only gray-market charters but also uncertified repair facilities, parts, and importation. Brazil's top aviation official, Secretary of Civil Aviation Dario Lopes, will discuss long-term goals for the country's general aviation. Embraer founder Ozires Silva will be the keynote speaker at the opening session on Tuesday morning.

The aircraft start rolling into the static display at 2 p.m. today.

Source: AIN Online (08/10/18)


Join Us at LABACE 2018



Visit World Fuel Services at LABACE 2018 in So Paulo, Brazil

Experience how your operation can benefit from our comprehensive solutions. Whether you need help achieving your operational performance goals, or are looking for reliable fuel supply and pricing around the globe, we’re able to deliver the customized solutions you need.

Visit us in booth #2006, August 14-16, and discover why we are the network to partner with for success in your world.

Don't miss your opportunity to enter to win an iPad by signing up for a myWorld demo. Plus, be sure to visit with World-Way Aviation and other members of the Air Elite Network co-exhibiting in our booth.