Remember the General Motors bosses who flew on the company's jet rather than drove to
When the economy is booming so too is merger and acquisition activity. All major M&As require batallions of lawyers, accountants, bankers and consultants to fly around the world doing due diligence and crossing the t's. At hundreds of dollars/euros an hour, these guys do not do hanging around in airport security lines and taxi queues...and if you were paying the bill, neither would you want them to. When the M&A bandwagon stopped in 2007/2008 so did their travel
Finally - despite what the business aviation community would have you think - a lot of final destinations for those flying on private jets are golf courses, marinas,
So as the industry gathers at
As events proved, they were getting worse. Business aviation traffic may have begun to stabilise mid-last year and used aircraft prices bottom out. But despite going into the downturn with record backlogs, plunging orderbooks soon put paid to them
(think of all these air taxi and fractional start-ups that planned to acquire 60 jets and then promptly went bust) and manufacturers were forced to massively retrench.
We will have a big team - including me - at EBACE next week to take the temperature. My feeling is we will see plenty of optimism and relief that the worst is over. But the fragility of the recovery, worries about the effect of the so-called PIGS on the eurozone economy and the lingering effect of the production ramp-back, which will go on through 2011, will mean there will be few big programme, order or business start-up announcements.
Keep up with the latest from the show on www.flightglobal.com/ebace and read our take on the highlights from the three days in our 11-17 May issue.