European Business Aviation News In Brief

London Heliport
Credit: Aviation Images

Harrods Aviation Reopens After Lockdown

London-based Harrods Aviation resumed normal operations at its Luton and Stansted FBOs as well as its Air Harrods helicopter management and charter service on May 20. “Staff continue to respond well to the challenges and have adapted well to our new stringent cleaning regime and temperature checks before anybody can enter our buildings,” says Operations Director Kerry Besgrove. “There are inevitably challenges that we face, not least of which is finding hotel accommodations for crews. However, we have now successfully sourced several options for crew at both bases. COVID-19-adapted ground transportation is also available.” 

SEA Prime Readies Milan Airports To Resume International Flights

Credit: Milano Prime

Milan’s Linate and Malpensa airports are ready to take advantage of Italy’s imminent relaxation of international travel restrictions, as airport operator SEA Prime rolls out a comprehensive post-COVID operational strategy. The “4Ds” approach tackles distancing, disinfection, devices and digitalization across the two airports. “In mid May, the Italian government announced a lift of travel restrictions in Italy, and from June 3 to and from European destinations,” says SEA Prime CEO Chiara Dorigotti. “Traffic is gradually increasing. Health-control measures  are paramount to maximizing passengers’ confidence.”

London Heliport Resumes Operations

The London Heliport, at Battersea, has resumed operations with revised working practices and operational procedures devised in accordance with government guidance, the heliport said in a statement. “These will be implemented to meet the need to remain alert to social-distancing measures with the continuing risks from the coronavirus pandemic.”

AviationManuals Publishes FBO COVID White Paper

AviationManuals, which publishes digital operations manuals, has backed up procedural recommendations published early in the COVID-19 crisis with a white paper advising FBO managers on how best to manage coronavirus-related risks and update emergency response plans. “By now, FBO operators should be conscious that everyone’s perceptions and attitudes with regard to risk have changed dramatically,” says CEO Mark Baier. “Making customers and employees comfortable in times like these has become paramount, so we wanted to offer some enhancements people can put in place.” The white paper can be downloaded from

IBAC Offers Virtual Audits to Help Firms Operate During COVID Crisis

A corporate carrier based in Alaska and the Carlsbad Jet Center in California made small slices of business-aviation history earlier this year when they became the first organizations to use a new remote-auditing option offered by the International Business Aviation Council (IBAC). The temporary option was introduced in March to enable IS-BAO and IBAC organizations to continue to operate safely during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We had to take advantage of the virtual tools available and collaborate as a team to make it work,” says IBAC’s accredited auditor, Rob Little, of his work on the Alaskan project.

MedAire Turns to Zoom to Deliver Training During Pandemic

The COVID-19 crisis has emphasized the need for air crews to understand and follow correct medical procedures. With classroom teaching impossible, business- and general-aviation medical and security experts MedAire have launched a course taught via Zoom. The virtual course entitled “Management of Inflight Illness and Injury” covers skills applicable to any inflight medical situation. “Innovation is a hallmark of MedAire,” says CEO Bill Dolny. “Now, crewmembers can continue to receive the training they need, regardless of their location.”

SMEA Wins First San Marino Cargo AOC

Credit: Wikipedia

San Marino Executive Aviation (SMEA) has become the first air-cargo operator to be awarded an air operator certificate by San Marino, a republic surrounded by Italy. The airline began operating an Airbus A300-600R in cargo roles toward the end of 2019 and has been transporting medical supplies to Italy from China. “We are living in times where we have realized how fundamental air cargo is for our daily lives,” says Waked Jayyousi, SMEA’s accountable manager. “We have demonstrated to the [San Marino Civil Aviation Authority] that our special cargo operations meet international standards during such a vulnerable and critical period.”

Web Manuals Offers Free Licenses to Support Post-COVID Recovery

Web Manuals, the Malmo, Sweden-based digital-documentation specialist, is offering new customers a complementary package of licenses and training to help businesses bounce back from the COVID-19 slump. Until Aug. 31, a business can get access for five readers or reviewers, one editor and one free compliance library, with no system limitations; onboarding training is also free. Customers can opt out before July 31 and will not be billed. “Ensuring compliance and safety during this time through up-to-date manuals should not be another cost to worry about,” says CEO Martin Lidgard.

DC To Install SCS Elite Cabin On Global 5000

DC Aviation Group, the Stuttgart,Germany-based completions house, has been contracted to upgrade a Bombardier Global 5000 with the Elite Smart Cabin System from Gogo. “No other solution on the market delivers the breadth and depth of functionality that SCS Elite does,” says Daniel Heidrich, DC’s director of sales for technical services. “We are very pleased that this system allows the customers to use their own personal integrated device to do whatever they choose.” The contract also includes installation of a new satcom system and Inmarsat’s SwiftBroadband High Data Rate service.

Wittels Joins Farnborough Airport

Credit: TAG Aviation

Richard Wittels has been appointed business development manager at England’s Farnborough Airport. Wittels joins the airfield staff after 14 years with TAG Aviation UK. “We are delighted to welcome Richard to the team as the airport continues to deliver a world-class, bespoke experience for its customers,” says airport CEO Brandon O’Reilly. “We are always looking at ways to further strengthen our position as Europe’s leading business-aviation airport, and Richard’s experience and skills will contribute to our ongoing success.” The Swiss-based TAG group sold the airport last September to Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets.

John Morris

John was editor of Aviation Week's ShowNews for nearly two decades. He retired in 2020. His background in business journalism before joining Aviation Week includes stints at Reuters, the American Banker daily banking newspaper and as business news editor at the Milwaukee Journal and the Cincinnati Enquirer.