I’m old enough to remember watching the old “Tonight Show,” with Johnny Carson. One of my favorite sketches he did was when he became Carnac the Magnificent, where he would do a comedy routine guessing answers to questions in a sealed envelope.
Well, I’m no Carnac, but I thought it would be interesting to poll business aviation leaders to see what they predict will happen in the industry in 2011. We’ll take a look at these answers again at the end of the year to see how they did.
Ed Bolen, president and CEO, National Business Aviation Association:
I predict a lot of cautious optimism in 2011. The U.S. economy feels better than it has in two years. We still have challenges including the Large Aircraft Security Program and FAA reauthorization, but we have come a long way and have momentum to get through 2011.
Pete Bunce, president and CEO, General Aviation Manufacturers Association:
The Bilateral Agreement on Aviation Safety between the U.S. and Europe will be implemented in 2011, paving the way for formal discussions to begin on a host of important transatlantic safety, operational and regulatory issues.
Eric Byer, vice president, National Air Transportation Association:
a long-term FAA reauthorization bill will finally be approved by Congress and signed into law by President Obama.
Brian Foley, president and founder, Brian Foley Associates:
I’m predicting that the quarterly General Aviation Manufacturers Association worldwide GA shipment reports will finally provide some long-awaited good news. Early on, we’ll hear of deliveries firming up with pistons, followed by jets and turboprops later in the year.
Craig Fuller, president, Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association:
more work will advance on the avgas issue. While fully expecting our high octane 100LL avgas to remain available to power our piston aircraft, there is an aggressive search underway for both lower lead and unleaded alternatives. We look for progress and greater certainty in what remains a multi-year process.
Robert Mark, CEO, CommAvia and Editor, Jetwhine.com:
small-cabin jets will continue to push ahead. While there have not been many new jobs created, there are quite a few folks out there with lots of spare cash in their pockets in the past year. And they want to get out of piston airplanes and don´t want to stop at TBMs or Meridians. They want jets. That means Mustangs and Eclipse.
John Rosanvallon, President and CEO, Dassault Falcon:
2011 will continue to be a year of recovery for the business jet market in the United States and Europe as most of the sales will be in the replacement market. BRIC country market growth, China in particular, will accelerate and OEMs will respond with an increased customer service presence in those areas.