On February 17th & 18th, 2014, Executive & VIP Aviation International (EVA) kicked off its first FBO Expo at the Hilton Hotel located at Heathrow Airport in London, UK. The International FBO Expo 2014 featured FBO exhibitors from around the world, focusing particular attention on those companies established in and expanding into emerging markets such as Brazil, China, India, Russia, CIS and the Far/Middle East. Delegates to the expo consisted of key decision-making industry professionals in touch with FBOs on a daily basis. The show ran alongside EVA International’s other big event, Future of Business Aviation Conference 2014.
Meridian proudly participated in the inaugural event with an exhibit booth. In 2013, Executive & VIP Aviation published an in-depth article about Meridian entitled, “Defending the #1 FBO Spot” in its June issue. It made sense to have a physical presence at the show so EVA’s audience would have an opportunity to create an association with the company featured in the editorial. Anthony Banome, FBO Fuel Sales, was there to represent Meridian Teterboro (Meridian’s FBO) and had this to say, “The FBO Expo had definitely exceeded my expectations. It was a great venue for us because it provided an excellent networking opportunity with European-based operators, as well as giving us good exposure to FBOs in growing markets. It was very productive.”
The FBO industry is one that has evolved dramatically, particularly over the last decade, and has fought fiercely to satisfy the demands of business aviation, adjust to the effects of the global economy, and carve out its own innovative opportunities for growth and expansion beyond the simplistic function of the FBO. Given the ever more competitive nature of the industry, the need for harmonized first-class service on the ground as well as in the air, and particularly the global interest and growth in emerging markets, FBOs are a hot focus of attention. Feedback from EVA readers revealed a niche demand for an FBO industry event focusing on the essential relationships between FBOs, manufacturers, owners, operators, brokers, and chief pilots while also providing a forum of support for the various supply chains that reinforce these sectors.
According to Max Raja, EVA Sales Manager, “The objective of the FBO Expo is to showcase the value of the indispensable relationships of our exhibitors and delegates – from the FBO to the passengers, brokers, operators, owners and manufacturers and all those in between. With the emergence of new global trading trends, the role of this focused supply chain cannot be over-stated as these key decision makers, products and services ensure business aviation remains the ultimate flying experience as well as a profitable corporate venture. This strictly targeted industry event guarantees both exhibitors and delegates excellent networking and new business opportunities.”