Building business at North perry

A newly acquired FBO finds success at a South Florida ‘grassroots’ airport

With regard to the FBO that was here before Bobby’s Landing, Srkal comments, “It really wasn’t an FBO; they were allowed to sell fuel, so if that qualifies them as an FBO, that’s all it was.

“We occupied one of the two large storage hangars on the FBO leasehold, and we pumped the vast majority of the gas that was sold.”

Two things come into play, explains Benyo. “One, there is a cost associated with filling someone else’s profit margins; and two, service,” he says.

“We are not weekend warriors; we have contracts that need to be filled at certain times. When the FBO came up for sale, we went out and said let’s buy this for those two reasons. Let’s save some money on some fuel, and second, … if we staff and manage it with our guys, we’ll get fuel on time.

“There wasn’t much activity at this FBO at the time anyway; I think there were 12 airplanes on the ramp.”

“We came in and renovated the FBO facility, gave it a conference room, and made it more open and inviting.”

After the FBO was purchased, there were between 4,000 and 6,000 gallons of avgas pumped per month for the first few months of operation, says Benyo. “Last month we pumped 21,000 gallons plus, and we have some 60 airplanes on the ramp.

“The runway is long enough for us to get some jet-A traffic, so we decided to service that market as well; that demand has been growing consistently ever since.”

The majority of fuel sold at Bobby’s Landing is still avgas, but Benyo relates that they also want to be a reliever to Fort Lauderdale Executive, Fort Lauderdale Hollywood International, and Opa Locka, “Because those places are getting all jammed up,” says Benyo.

At Fort Lauderdale International, “They’re building a new runway on the south side of the airport, so it will have a departure and arrival runway — big airport style,” says Benyo. “With that, they’re going to slowly phase GA activity out.”

The FBO is currently in the middle of a project to develop some 16 acres. The development includes ten large storage hangars, 15 T-hangars, a new FBO terminal building, and a WWII-era themed restaurant. “The restaurant will be very representative of the history of this airport,” says Srkal.

“It’s a great thing for the aviation community in general because it will bring awareness to the airport, and bring people out here.” At a cost of some $12 million, the second phase of the FBO’s upgrade are slated to be complete by year-end.

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