Asian FBO market to be worth $74.23m in 2018


Frost & Sullivan forecasts strong growth for Asian fixed base operators (FBOs) but warns of qualified mechanic shortage.

Frost & Sullivan, the global consultancy, expects the Asian fixed base operators (FBO) market to be worth $74.23 million by 2018, up from$43.7 million in 2008.

The consultancy is confident that rising numbers of local high net worth individuals (HNWIs) and improving government regulations will increase the Asian corporate jet fleet. It believes that there are significant opportunities for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to form strategic partnerships with local participants.

“With a current market potential of over $45 million and an expected surge in potential by 70 per cent through 2018, the future of the Asia Pacific’s FBO market is expected to remain on the growth track,” says  Gautam Ratan Kanal, a research analyst at Frost & Sullivan. “The growth rests largely on the sustained growth of business aviation in Hong Kong and Singapore and the adoption of the business aviation model by China. Going forward, business aviation is likely to become a norm for large corporates and HNWIs.”

The consultancy says one of the big challenges will be finding skilled mechanics to work in FBOs. It also advises local firms to tie-up with OEMs.

“It is vital for existing service providers to understand that as a result of the global economic slowdown, overall spending patterns have been affected,” says Kanal. “Hence institutions that earlier encouraged private jet financing are momentarily on the retreat, even as large scale expansion of services needs to be carried out with greater care. Local market participants need to closely work with OEMs and operators from Europe and North America in order to be authorised to carry out services which will provide them with greater opportunities,” says Kanal. “This approach will also aid in expanding their customer base as a result of being certified to carry out maintenance for various types of jets.”