Meridian, the award-winning private aviation company based at Teterboro Airport (KTEB) in Teterboro, NJ, sent a team of five representatives to the 2015 European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (EBACE2015) held in Geneva, Switzerland. This year marked the 15th anniversary of the business aviation conference. Organizers said this year’s event once again underscored the show’s value to exhibitors and attendees, and its continuing importance to the industry’s advancement in Europe and beyond. EBACE is jointly hosted by the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) and the European Business Aviation Association (EBAA).
“As we marked this 15th year of EBACE, it was clear that the event has always been, and will continue to be, a trade show featuring new products and cutting-edge technologies, and a premier venue for networking and getting the latest information about the trends shaping this dynamic industry,” said EBAA CEO Fabio Gamba. NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen agreed, stating: “EBACE remains a forward-looking event, which is why it will always be a can’t-miss show on the industry’s calendar.” Bolen and Gamba also noted that this 15th EBACE offered an opportunity to consider the show’s phenomenal growth since the first edition of the show, held in 2001.
For example, that inaugural EBACE featured 200 exhibitors, and about 30 aircraft on static display. This year, the event drew nearly 500 exhibitors and nearly 60 aircraft on display. EBACE2015 attendees came from more than 100 countries, from the European region and beyond. The attendees had an opportunity to hear from industry thought-leaders who participated in a variety of education sessions, an International Transactions Seminar and a Safety Workshop.
This year’s EBACE also featured the first-ever Inspiration Zone with a dedicated focus on the industry’s future. The Inspiration Zone, positioned on the exhibit floor, was the location for a session on Unmanned Aircraft Systems, an inaugural Young Professionals Networking Event, and a session on Skills and Careers. A Career Day for European post-secondary students interested in aviation was attended by 70 students from Switzerland, Germany and Spain.
A host of exhibitor press conferences, held on and off the EBACE show floor, provided news-making announcements about companies’ products and plans. More than 400 representatives with news organizations from around the world attended and covered EBACE2015.
As it has every year, EBACE2015 also served as an advocacy platform, showcasing the industry’s importance to government leaders. At the show’s Opening General Session, Francois Longchamp, state counselor of the Canton of Geneva, reiterated his support for business aviation as essential to regional commerce. Patrick Ky, the executive director of the European Aviation Safety Agency, outlined his plans to ensure that future policymaking by the agency reflects the diversity of companies and mission profiles in business aviation.
“We thank the government leaders who joined us at EBACE this year, and also the exhibitors, attendees and others who made EBACE2015 such a success,” Gamba said. Bolen echoed Gamba’s sentiment, adding: “We are eager to celebrate the next 15 years, and beyond, for the show.”
Next year’s EBACE will return to Palexpo and Geneva International Airport from May 24-26, 2016.