Business in Asia Takes Off
Written and Produced by Mark Patiky
Business in Asia is gaining speed as key Asian markets continue to develop as hubs for global business. “The need to efficiently travel to expanding markets within Asia and make far-reaching flights to other global markets is leading people to take a close look at the advantages of a business aircraft,” explains Ernest Edwards, president of Embraer Executive Jets. “These are essential tools for gaining vital access to growing business opportunity.”
A business jet is not as much about luxury as it is about time. It’s about boosting personal mobility and augmenting executive productivity by allowing travelers to reach their ultimate destination quickly and remain in constant touch while they travel.
Conquering Time and Space
For decades, North America and Europe have represented the largest business-jet market, as they are home to thousands of airports servicing both small communities and major metropolitan areas. These smaller-scale airports allow direct, rapid access to business prospects that are often not easily accessible via commercial carriers.
Today, Asian business leaders and governments are realizing the extraordinary benefits that business aircraft can offer for stimulating the economy and sustaining growth. Without security delays, interim stops and plane changes, what was once a daylong commercial airline trip becomes a productive, convenient hour or two aloft in a business aircraft. You fly on your schedule, not an airline’s, and you fly direct. Sure, it’s more expensive, but in the interconnected, 24-hour-a-day global economy, investment opportunity is perishable, and meeting face-to-face is essential. With a business aircraft, the value of time saved and business accomplished can be immense.
Naturally, such heightened demand will drive airport expansion and the construction of new terminals designed to accommodate business and private-jet passenger needs. According to CNN, the business jet fleet in China will grow by 30% this year. At Shanghai’s two major airports alone, more than 2,000 business aircraft departed or landed last year, and according to Airport Business magazine, that figure is expected to rise 10% to 15% in 2011.
As economic expansion continues, business aircraft are quickly becoming accepted throughout Asia Pacific as the most powerful tools available for saving time and enabling unprecedented access to key markets in the region and around the globe.
So where do you begin? You can invest in a business aircraft outright, but if you want to try it out and discover its advantages before taking the plunge, you can turn to top quality charter companies like Asia Jet, which has offices in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Beijing and Tokyo. With a focus on safety, reliability and impeccable service, Asia Jet is perfectly positioned to supply travelers throughout the region and beyond, says CEO Mike Walsh. His rapidly growing fleet includes midsize Gulfstream 200 (HK$46,000/hour) and Cessna Citation XLS+ (HK$34,000/hour) aircraft, ideal for cross-country flights; intercontinental jets like the large-cabin Gulfstream GIV (HK$56,000/hour); and a wide-body Bombardier Challenger 605 (HK$53,000/hour) that can travel nonstop from Bangkok to Melbourne or from Beijing to Jeddah.
In addition to partnering with Hong Kong-based MetroJet, Asia Jet recently teamed up with China Eastern Airlines Executive Air in Shanghai to offer an even broader range of service. “The relationship makes Asia Jet the first China-based foreign business jet charter operator,” says Walsh.
Flying on Your Own Schedule
Whether you need to fly once or once a month, Asia Jet offers no-commitment, pay-as-you-go on-demand charter. If your travel needs are more frequent, the company’s innovative Asia Jet Card Program may be just the ticket. With a single prepayment for travel, Jet Card members gain access to the largest, newest private-jet fleet in the region, operated to the highest standards of safety and security. Benefits include preferential rates, priority booking, a guaranteed response time of two hours, multilingual customer support, and a choice of jet size and category for each trip.
Walsh stresses that charter demand is currently very popular. “A combination of factors is creating the need,” he says. “Not only are Asian-based businesses expanding in domestic markets, but European, American, African, Russian and Middle Eastern companies are also increasing their presence here.” In addition, he notes, Asian travelers with investment, business and leisure interests abroad are taking frequent advantage of Asia Jet’s service. And since costs remain the same irrespective of the number of passengers, Walsh reports that typical flights include as many as six to eight passengers. The result is far greater value for the charter customer.
However, as travel requirements increase, many companies and individuals are turning to outright business aircraft ownership. In that case, Asia Jet, with its extensive operational expertise, can professionally manage any aircraft and provide for all necessary regulatory and flight requirements, including highly trained crews and maintenance. Asia Jet also can place your aircraft in the charter fleet when it’s not in use, which will generate revenue that helps reduce more than 50% of ownership costs. This option is particularly attractive for private owners based offshore who want to regularly operate their aircraft within domestic China.
The Ultimate Competitive Advantage
When you’ve decided that your own jet is the way to go, Embraer has the perfect solution: The large-cabin Lineage1000 and the Legacy 650, for example, are ideal for long, nonstop intercontinental flights, while the amazingly economical Phenom 100 and larger Phenom 300 are popular choices for quick, shorter-range domestic hops.
Designed for speed, efficiency and functionality, these Embraer aircraft provide remarkable operating economy and unsurpassed passenger amenities, including ergonomically superb interiors, enhanced comfort and exceptional functionality. That means you’ll be as productive in the air as you are on the ground.
“Everybody needs to be connected at all times,” remarks José Eduardo Costas, Embraer’s Vice President, Marketing and Sales, Asia Pacific—Executive Jets. Aloft in these Embraer jets, you can remain in constant touch from takeoff to touchdown. Using the latest highly sophisticated in-flight communications systems, you can phone and fax or connect iPads and laptops via internal Wi-Fi to surf the Web and reach out to the world. In addition, you arrive relaxed, refreshed and fully prepared for the business day ahead.
Today, Asian business leaders and governments are realizing the extraordinary benefits that
business aircraft can offer for stimulating the economy and sustaining growth.
Offering spacious, comfortable work and relaxation environments, these jets are ideally suited for spanning the long distances between key business centers across Asia and around the globe. The Lineage 1000, newly certified in India, can fly nonstop from Mumbai to London or from Shanghai to Sydney (8,334-km range with four passengers and 8,149-km range with eight passengers). The Legacy 650 (7,223-km range with four passengers and 7,112-km range with eight passengers) also handles long distances with ease.
While en route, you can hold a conference with eight people in one area, serve dinner in another, and have additional space to work quietly, relax or sleep comfortably in large berth-able seats. In addition, the Lineage can be outfitted with a private bedroom and bathroom with a stand-up shower.
Mobility and speed are essential in serving growing domestic markets. For shorter journeys, the very fast, capable Phenom 100 (2,182-km range with four passengers) and Phenom 300 (3,650-km range with six passengers) jets are the perfect answer. With their superbly comfortable, ergonomic BMW Design Works interiors, they offer style, comfort and remarkable operating efficiency.
Changing the Course of Business with the Latest Technologies
Currently in development are the Embraer Legacy 450 and 500. These midsize and super-midsize aircraft will feature completely new designs incorporating the most advanced engine, airframe and avionics technologies, including computer-controlled “fly-by-wire,” used in the latest fighter aircraft for superior agility, explains Edwards. This also will smooth out turbulence and enhance passenger comfort. In
addition, both aircraft will have enhanced sound suppression, low cabin altitudes that will help eliminate fatigue on the longest journeys, and six-foot-tall (1.8 m), flat-floor cabins for easy maneuverability.
On the flight deck, pilots will benefit from an astonishing array of technologies such as military-style head-up displays that overlay flight instrument indications on the view outside the cockpit, and synthetic and enhanced vision that will provide clear images of terrain and obstructions even in the worst weather conditions.
Throughout its 40-year history, Embraer jets have also become well known for their reliability and maintainability. “Our executive jet design philosophy reflects the same characteristics that are crucial to the challenges of commercial airline operations,” says Edwards.
An Economic Essential
Once considered a luxury, business aircraft are unquestionably necessities for conquering time and space. The best part is that these powerful business tools are more affordable, available and capable than ever before.
In emerging global markets, there is no better time to take advantage of a business aircraft, Costas points out. “Indonesia is one of the fastest-growing economies in Asia, and you can travel 4,000 km and still be in the same country,” he says. That’s a lot of ground to cover. And with 1.2 billion people—with an additional 1 billion expected over the next 20 years—reaching that population will require the ultimate in
mobility, agility and flexibility.
With a business aircraft, the seemingly impossible becomes possible. You can fly where you want, when you want, with speed, comfort and efficiency.
So isn’t it time that you, too, climbed aboard?
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