BusinessIQ / Press

The votes came in, and Britain is out

14 Jul 2016

So what does Brexit mean for the future of business aviation? The results of the British referendum to leave the European Union (EU) three weeks ago came as a shock across the globe, and whilst it’s too early to predict exactly how it will impact the industry, the uncertainty the decision brings will be felt over the coming months.

So what does Brexit mean for the future of business aviation?

The results of the British referendum to leave the European Union (EU) three weeks ago came as a shock across the globe, and whilst it’s too early to predict exactly how it will impact the industry, the uncertainty the decision brings will be felt over the coming months.

Through the Avinode Marketplace, we can see that so far the decision has not affected business for UK brokers, as a number of our members saw record traffic in the week following the referendum.

Of course we do expect to see changes in the long term across Europe. The UK, and London in particular, has long been accepted as the business capital of Europe, owning by far the largest share of business aviation traffic compared to other cities across the continent. Over the last 12 months, nearly one in ten business jets have departed from London, approximately double the figure for the next most popular cities of Paris, Nice/Cannes and Geneva. The graph above shows the high share of flights clearly; it will be interesting to see whether and how this changes over the next 12 months if global businesses choose to move away from London and which European cities start to dominate in its place.

Speaking more closely to Avinode Marketplace members, we have been hearing mixed views on how the news will affect their businesses and the wider industry. We leave you with a selection of responses from UK-based operators and brokers:

Chris Gazzard, Blink Ltd, commented:

“The immediate foreign exchange impact on the business has been neutral at this stage, given all of the revenue streams and cost centres we have in GBP, EUR, USD, CHF and other currencies. The longer term impact on the business is a big unknown. If “Out” really means out, and the UK were to leave the Single European Sky, then in order to maintain a floating fleet setup it may be necessary to run multiple AOCs, which will only drive up costs. EASA regulation has helped to level the competition in Europe, and we have been eagerly waiting the Air Taxi EASA FTL Scheme to help level the playing field for us.

“It does seem the UK politicians on both sides of the Brexit debate are motivated to secure free trade, and the Single European Sky, and I’m hopeful that the UK can negotiate a mutually beneficial exit that continues to allow business to flourish. Blink will be putting measures into place to secure our business model whatever the outcome, and continue to serve the many thousands of passengers that rely on us each year, in the UK and in Europe.”

Mike Ryan, Fly Victor, commented:

“We haven’t seen any adverse effects following Brexit, and nor do we anticipate any in the coming months. We expect to see continued business growth and in the week following the referendum, our traffic hit a record high – indicating that Brexit will have very little impact on our position within the industry.”

Ian Moore, Vista Jet, commented:

“It is still too early to tell the true impact Brexit will have on the industry, from a buyer, seller, and even regulatory point of view. It all comes down to another period of economic and political uncertainty. This is something VistaJet has proven resilient to in our 12 years of operations, even seeing these as strong growth periods. It is our belief that companies working across a broad range of markets, with an international customer base, should not be as exposed, and could even flourish from this situation.

We remain a proud and active operator within Europe and the UK, and are committed to growth of both markets in the long-term, irrespective of short-term challenges Brexit may present.”

If you have comments or suggestions of topics you would like us to cover in future issues, please let us know here [email protected]


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