“What we did was say, let’s take our business and let’s focus it differently. Let’s take the Flying Cloud location and make this a state-of-the-art full-service FBO able to accommodate corporate aircraft. Let’s not lose what we are doing with flight training for the recreational people, but let’s totally change it and expand to cover all areas of service … and build a facility to meet those expectations.
“That’s what we did; everybody worked well with us from the MAC all the way down, and we are happy to say today that it worked. Business is there, and we pulled it off.”
The new facility became operational on October 3rd, and already things are going very well. Hangar facilities are full, and transient jet fuel sales is one of the largest parts of the fuel business at Thunderbird right now — and that remains on the increase.
“Percentage-wise, we have doubled our jet fuel sales in the last couple years. Now with the opening, we are already seeing another doubling of those sales ... just in the last few weeks with the new operation in place,” says Grazzini-Olson. “ ... and we are working on gaining market share.”
Adds Cape, “For planes based at this airport, we are the largest 100LL provider here; at least 70 percent of the planes based here are buying that from us.
“The runway is at 5,000-feet now, which opened up a lot more possibilities with regard to corporate traffic. Really what we saw here was light jets and down; and now with the runway extension, we are seeing large cabin corporate traffic.
“That is clearly growing; people are coming in here now that they can; traffic is up at Flying Cloud Airport.”
Says Grazzini-Olson, “We are a corporate FBO, but we have not forgotten our roots. We don’t want to forget where we came from, but we have expanded during tough economic times, and we are happy with how we are poised in the market today.”
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