The use of business jets by companies has been something of a hot topic for Barry LaBov in the past. We defend our use of our jet, as it not only benefits the company, but those in the community too. There are two major reasons behind the fact that LaBov and Beyond uses a business jet. Those reasons are: for the sake of growing our business; and for the sake of creating jobs.
Looking at the fact that we are a marketing communications company, being able to meet with and serve our clients in a timely manner is an absolutely essential part of our business practices. From our main offices in Fort Wayne, Indiana, we can utilize our jet to meet with clients where we need to, and when we need to. The prospect of being able to meet with clients in places like Washington D.C. or New York City, and be back in Fort Wayne for dinnertime is an enticing one. Being able to do this, we expand our base of possible clientele. We can meet with clients nationwide, and do on almost a daily basis. We utilize our jet to the fullest. We always travel with a full team of employees; filling up the jet to maximize efficiency. By flying out of the local community airport, we create jobs for pilots and create business for the airport.
Using our jet the way we do is beneficial for all parties, and many LaBov and Beyond Reviews agree. On one hand, having the jet gives us a competitive edge over other rival businesses, and it sends a powerful, clear message to our clients: LaBov and Beyond is committed to growing, serving our clients in the most efficient way possible, and getting the job done right. On the other hand, the almost daily stimulus we provide to our local small airport provides a boost for the local economy.
Name: Jerry Perelman
Title: Senior Account Manager
Aircraft: many, depending upon the needs of the mission.
I have been a pilot for more than 25 years, and have flown numerous different aircraft. My work with Blue Star Jets (www.bluestarjets.com) has permitted me to meet and arrange Private Aviation flights for some of the most well known world entertainment personalities, as well as executives, sports figures, golfers, skiers, fishermen and fisherwomen. They have flown everything from Light Lear, Beechjet and Citation jets, to G-Vs and Global Express jets, from NY, Aspen and CA, to Singapore, Taiwan, Dubai, and most places in between.
With all that said, I had a most amazing flight I would like to share.
I recently piloted a small plane to a small airport north of Philadelphia, as part of my membership with Animal Rescue Flights, to pick up a dog about to be put to sleep. This beautiful dog had lost the use of her hind legs and had to wear a brace with wheels to get around. Her discouraged owners had placed her into a Shelter. Time was about up, when fortunately, a new home was found, but the dog had to be moved quickly, before the final curtain would fall.
A car ride was out of the question, as the trip would take too long.
When I put this sweet dog into the baggage area, she whimpered as would any soul, displaced and afraid. When I placed her body brace next to the cage, so she could smell it, her whimpering stopped. She found a familiar friend, the brace, and it comforted her.
The flight to her new adoptee was smooth and uneventful, but unfortunately, she could not see the magnificent lights of New York City as we passed over on our flight plan, on a clear evening, toward her new home.
Upon landing, I handed over the cage to her new owner. She was taken out, by her new, yet experienced and caring owner, and held for a while for comfort sake. She was so sweet, but even more so, when she reached over to me and licked my hand, somehow showing she knew I had been a part of her Rescue.
It just doesn't get much better than that!
Name: Jim Schumacher
Title: Public Relations/Marketing
Aircraft: Numerous owned/leased aircraft
As the Wisconsin's largest full-service FBO, our lifeline is business aviation. In its broadest sense, we include air charter, flight training and rentals, maintenance and aircraft sales. In business for 28 years, Wisconsin Aviation operates over 50 aircraft, from two-seat trainers to 9 passenger executive jets, from our three southeastern Wisconsin locations. In 2008, we provided air charter service for over 300 companies, 700 customers, resulting in 1500+ flights spending 16,000 hours in the air. While the majority of our customers are from Wisconsin and adjacent states, their destinations included all of the US, Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean area.
Without exception, their reason for utilizing air charter was because it afforded them enhanced productivity, allowed technicians to travel with managers, saved valuable time by flying direct vs using the hub and spoke system. They utilized their travel time as an airborne office which permitted confidential, corporate, conversations enroute.
On the flight training side, our 28 training/rental aircraft permitted 122 students to attain their pilot certificates/ratings in 2008. Some students eventually purchased new (Cirrus) or other used aircraft to enhance their business travel.
To travel, work, spend, save and utilize time SMARTER--Fly Business Aviation CHARTER!
Name: Toby Blanton
Title: Director of Operations
Aircraft: Challenger and Learjet
I'm the Director of Operations for Ted Turner. I'm a very fortunate person in that I've held this position for over 20 years now, and today, we employ 4 pilots full-time.
Ted's plane isn't just about luxury…it's a tool…a working piece of machinery. It never sits for more than a few days as he is always in search of new opportunities. In fact, sitting watching others has never been in his plans. It's an old saying, but "when the going gets tough..." you know the rest. Timidity didn't get Ted to where he is now, and following others sure didn't either. Because visionaries can see what others can't.
What I'm saying here is that we're not slowing down. Neither should business aviation as a whole. We need our visionaries who go in their jet, make deals that create jobs right here in America, and are proud to FLY.
Cessna has an ad that says best what prompted me to write this:
"One thing is certain: True visionaries will continue to fly."
So I urge all of us to rise to the occasion...to new opportunities for our economy to flourish and prosper.
Name: Jack R. Arnold
Title: President, JR Arnold Consulting, LLC
Aircraft: Various jets and turboprop
As an Aviation Consultant and Broker (www.jrarnoldconsulting.com), I specialize in justifying the cost of a corporate airplane to my clients or sometimes rationalizing the reason not to buy an airplane. We objectively critique the financial costs and pair those costs to the benefits of corporate and personal air travel. Over the last twenty-five years here are a few comments from aircraft owners:
"To put it simply, my airplane is my time machine."
"Our company jet is a tremendous business tool; I just couldn't do my job without it."
"When you have access to an aircraft like this, it changes the way you do business & live your life."
"We hire our people for their experience, skills & talent. If they are rendered ineffective by traveling, that's poor utilization of their time."
Or as Bill Lear's Dallas billboard put it in 1965, "Welcome to Dallas. Your competition has been here and left in his Learjet."
We have all heard comments similar to these and the authors are quite sincere. The true reality is when the actual cost is compared to other travel options, time savings and productivity more than justify the cost. As James Coyne, President of NATA stated in his recent letter to President Obama:
"But my message is not that your use of Air Force One (or Marine One) is inappropriate. Not at all! It is a great value to the taxpayers... Personal aviation brings your enthusiasm to every corner of our nation and allows you to arrive refreshed for summit meetings around the world, anytime, anywhere."
Air travel is one of the most productive and advanced industries in the world, and it was developed right here in the United States. This is one of the industries that has made our country the most advanced and productive in the world. If you are a member of this industry, then share it, and if not, commit to learn more about it, you will find its benefits are quite contagious.
Name: Andrea Montgomery
Title: Owner Montgomery Aviation, Eagle Flyers and Solutions Air Charter
Aircraft: C172, C182, C310, Citation
Just a story I would like to share: Dan and I operate Montgomery Aviation which is the FBO for Indianapolis Executive Airport. We have several corporate jets based here. Yes they are fast and very nice but are primarily used for business. These corporations fly to their customers, and more importantly, bring business to our community. I know from them that having the ability to go to our general aviation airports all over the nation allows commerce to move and in this challenging economic time-we all need to utilize all the tools available to us to succeed in business.
As operators of Eagle Flyers Flight School, we have watched countless individuals share in the gift of flight. These are our pilots for tomorrow and we are blessed with an extensive national transportation system that allows individuals to go to the smaller airfields. This allows for economic development away from the commercial airports. We are also partners in Solutions Air Charter which allows smaller businesses to travel to their clients and be home in time for dinner. All of these aspects of general aviation promote our economy and expand our boundaries. Come visit us anytime!
Name: Dan Fregin
Title: Chief Pilot
Aircraft: KingAir C90-B
An example of one of our recent trips: Take two executives from Chico and an attorney from Concord (specializing in large loan litigation) to Fresno for an early afternoon court session. If the attorney had driven or gone through the lines at an airline terminal, or had to wait until the next return flight, at his billing rate that alone would have cost more than the total operating expenses for the WHOLE flight, not merely the cost of fuel. A bonus for the company: our executives were able to be at their offices for some time in the morning and again in the afternoon upon returning to Chico. Value multiplier to the company: 3 to 5 times their compensation packages.
Before we even taxied out at Concord, they had papers out, going over some final changes to be ready for court. Also, instead of driving, they may have had a normal family morning and time for whatever in the evening. Value: PRICELESS. AND: the taxers have all but given up on how to tax that.
Another advantage? We are able to retain the best people because we can get them to where they are needed to get things done, and then home to where the ideal quality of life can be pursued.
Name: Craig Fitzsimmons, CAM
Title: Director of Aviation Water Valley Land Co
Aircraft: King Air 350
Water Valley Land Company has more than 4,500 acres of master-planned commercial subdivisions and residential communities that offer dramatic mountain views, golf course living and recreational lakes which make its properties unique to the Northern Colorado region.
The family-owned company employs approximately 140 employees who are responsible for property management, sales and marketing, construction, golf course and country club operations and maintenance, and real estate development.
Business aviation has been a natural fit for the company since 2000.
Water Valley uses a King Air 350 once or twice a week, typically fully
loaded, about 450 hours per year to fly missions within a
600-mile radius of their home base of Fort Collins-Loveland Municipal Airport (FNL).
The airplane is a great tool for bringing potential customers to the Windsor area to see properties firsthand. Water Valley Land Co. has a competitive advantage in that we enable our customers to view a site with their own eyes - and from an aerial perspective.
The plane not only transports Water Valley executives and their
customers to development sites, it also serves as a flying office in
which staff can coordinate business activities and plans.
Name: Scott A. Moore
Title: Chief Pilot
Aircraft: King Air 350
Luck Stone Corporation is a third-generation family-owned stone company based in Richmond, Virginia. We have had a business aircraft for 37 years, starting with a Mooney. We currently fly a 2006 King Air 350 to support our 750 associates in Virginia, Maryland, and North Carolina. We fly out of a convenient 3,900 foot private runway located beside one of our stone quarries.
Our aircraft provides efficient transportation that is not possible otherwise. Over 40% of our trips are between Richmond and Leesburg, Virginia. This 30-minute flight saves our associates at least a 2.5 hour drive each way (assuming no traffic). One passenger told me that he could get more done on a half-day trip to Leesburg by air than if he had driven, and he is still able to return in time to attend meetings at the corporate office in the afternoon.
With a business aircraft, our associates are able to fly and meet with our suppliers, which many times are located in rural areas, far from airports served by the airlines. For example, we regularly go to Clearfield, Pennsylvania in order to bring our customers to visit the quarries of one of our suppliers. They can visit them for several hours and still get home to have dinner with their families.
Luck Stone is also using business aviation to creatively complete a project and keep some hourly associates employed. Our quarry in Pittsboro, North Carolina needed some stripping work done, which is removing soil from the surface to get to the stone layer. Rather than hire an outside stripping crew, we decided to take a team of four heavy equipment operators from Richmond to North Carolina to do the work. They spend 7 days at work in North Carolina and then we fly them home for 7 days with their families. This project will last 6 months and keeps these associates busy while cutting costs for the company at the same time.
Name: Richard Shine
Sometimes having a corporate aircraft is not simply a nice to have convenience, sometimes it is a necessary tool for survival!
That is the case with Manitoba Corporation. I joined this family business in 1970 fresh out of the USAF after serving six years of duty as a pilot. When I came into the business we were a small non-ferrous recycling firm that did business within twenty miles of our location in Buffalo, NY. We had twenty major accounts that furnished us with the metal necessary to sustain our business.
The 1970's were a very bad time for industry in upstate NY because plants were being closed or relocated to the Sunbelt. One by one we started losing our accounts. We took advantage of my ability to fly an aircraft and purchased a "business tool" not unlike a production machine, that allowed us to get to other areas and keep our business alive.
Today, we have only one local plant left, and not only have survived but have grown a great deal. Much of our success was the airplane that allowed us to cover a lot of ground in a day, yet be able to "mind the store". Most of our competitors from the 1970's and 80's are no longer in business, yet Manitoba Corporation has grown and thrived, thanks in large part to corporate aviation.
Name: John Rudolph
Title: Chief Pilot
Aircraft: King Air C90 and B200
If one of our clients calls and says they have a problem, our aircraft gives us the ability for an executive or manager to be face to face, at that client's office, before the end of the day.
Business aviation is vital for our company to continue to succeed as it has for more than 25 years.
Name: David Deters
Title: Chief Pilot
Aircraft: Citation Excel
I have worked for the same family for nearly 30 years. When I first started with their grocery company, we had sales of 300 million a year. When my boss sold the company 10 years later, it was doing over 2 billion a year in sales.
I then was moved over to a another food service company that my boss owned. That company was also doing about 300 million in sales. Some 15 years later when that company was sold, it was also doing over 2 billion in sales.
These companies were able to grow at this rate and were able to better respond to business opportunities because of the aircraft we owned and operated, and I have personally flown people from our companies at all levels of employment.
From the boss's family to executives, to truck drivers, to warehouse workers. What we did for them was get them to their destinations faster, and that got them home and back to their families sooner. Not once did I hear anyone complain the airplane wasn't useful in business.
I am proud to have served in this industry, and I am proud that my son now serves in this industry as well.
Aviation is an industry that serves.
Name: John Hammill Sr.
Aircraft: Cessna CJ1
We have been in business since 1955 manufacturing products for both automotive and medical industries and have been using private aviation since 1967.
We have owned eight different airplanes since that time and grown our sales from less than 1 million to over 40 million and employment from 35 employees to approx, 250 employees.
Our airplane is an indispensable piece of equipment in our operation. A quick check of Fortune 500 companies will reveal that those companies with aircraft outperform those without by a large margin.
We have found similar results with companies of our size as well.
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