Despite a decision to cancel ‘in-person’ events until the end of June, NBAA president and CEO Ed Bolen has pointed to ‘helpful tailwinds’ pushing a recovery for business aviation in 2021. In wide ranging comments made during successive podcasts, a ‘town hall forum’ and an appearance before the US House Subcommittee on Aviation, Bolen’s message was clear, realistic but optimistic.
The main driver of Bolen’s optimism is the large number of new clients who have turned to business aviation during the pandemic, seeing it as a flexible and safe way to travel. His key message is that ‘bizav’ must retain this new customer base by providing a good and reassuring service as the pandemic recedes. Anticipating economic recovery with the vaccination rollout and the easing of travel restrictions, Bolen said that bizav had demonstrated much stronger resilience than the commercial aviation sector. He also praised bizav’s continued innovation in technology and its commitment to the increasing use of sustainable fuels.
In the absence of ‘in-person’ events, Bolen also pointed to the success of virtual platforms and events in keeping the sector networking and up to date. As part of this, the NBAA and EBAA are to host a virtual EBACE Connect on 18-19 May in place of this year’s EBACE event in Geneva. EBACE Connect will bring together OEMs and sector representatives to discuss strategy and innovation for the recovery and development of business aviation.