CEOs make the case for business aviation

By Doug Gollan, July 20, 2019

A new report from the No Plane No Gain uses CEOs to highlight how private jets can increase a company’s efficiency and profits

To help highlight the benefits of business aviation, No Plane, No Gain, a group supported by the National Business Aviation Association and General Aviation Manufacturers Association, has issued a new report that includes endorsements from CEOs.


CEOs make the case for private jets

Among those spotlighted, Pamela Nicholson, CEO of Enterprise Holdings, says, “At Enterprise Holdings, we know a lot about the importance of having the right travel option. And for us, business aviation is a transportation mode that helps us be more efficient, productive and successful.”

Sheila C. Johnson, co-founder of cable television network BET and now CEO of Salamander Hotels & Resorts, added, “Business aviation takes Salamander Hotels & Resorts to new heights by putting us on the ground where we’re needed most.”

Pamela Nicholson, CEO of Enterprise Holdings, and Sheila C. Johnson, CEO of Salamander Hotels Resorts, discuss how business aviation benefits their companies.

“Business aviation is a business tool that helps Bass Pro Shops in its mission to inspire people to love, enjoy and conserve the great outdoors,” says Bass Pro Shops founder Johnny Morris.

Private jet productivity case studies

The report also offers several case studies, including one from Masco Corp., a leader in home improvement and building products, including Delta faucets and KraftMaid cabinets.

The company has grown through acquisitions. However, after the 2008 housing recession, the company, which has flown business aircraft since 1966, consolidated its fleet at one base in Detroit, tailoring the aviation operation to Masco’s evolving strategic priorities.

“One of my jobs is making sure what we’re doing at the flight department is aligned with what the home office is doing,” said Jay Orwin, director of aviation in the report.

“With the aircraft we [now] have, we’re able to fly in and get right to work,” added John Lindow, Masco’s VP-controller. “We’re focused on getting the maximum usage out of the airplanes.”

He said, employee teams often travel together, and the aircraft can make up to five stops in a day.

MacNeil Automotive Products produces Weathertech floor liners, using sophisticated tools to capture data and reverse-engineer complex vehicle geometry to ensure its accessories fit specific makes and models perfectly.

“To have that custom fit, we have to measure every vehicle that is built,” explained founder David MacNeil. To do that, sensitive measuring equipment must be transported to automakers’ plants.

The equipment will not fit in an overhead bin, and it might be damaged if checked as baggage or sent via an overnight shipper, so MacNeil carries it aboard the company aircraft.

“Because we have our own airplanes, we don’t have to worry about what the airline schedule is and transporting our very expensive technical equipment on a commercial flight. We just get in the plane, put the gear into the cargo hold and we’re on our way,” he said, adding, “Our planes get us in front of our customers. That hands-on approach has been a significant factor in the growth of our company.”

Brad Pierce, president of Orlando-based Restaurant Equipment World, regularly flies his single-engine Cirrus SR22T across the country in support of his company.

Although a substantial portion of his sales come through his company website, Pierce believes in going out and seeing existing and potential new customers in person as often as possible.

“This business would not be what it is today without the use of an aircraft,” said Pierce. “Online is the transactional side of our business, but when we are there, in person with the customer, that’s where the relationship flourishes.”

Private jet users outperform non-users

Included in the report is an analysis of S&P 500 companies showing those that use business aviation outperform those that don’t by 70%. A Nexa Advisors study of the Small Cap 600 showed similar results. It also showed private aviation users outperformed non-users in revenue growth by 23%.

You can download a copy of the full report here. To compare over 250 private jet programs head-to-head, subscribe to Private Jet Card Comparisons.

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