San Bernardino International Airport hires firm to attract Chinese air carriers

Nov. 15--In a bid to attract cargo operations, the San Bernardino International Airport Authority voted Wednesday to hire a China-based marketing firm to help promote the airport throughout China.

The airport will spend $25,000 to hire American Business Development Consulting Inc. in Shenzhen, China, to spend a year establishing contacts with potential air carriers.

The firm also has been hired by the city of Ontario and San Bernardino County to help in their foreign marketing efforts, the company's Web site reports.

Henry Wang, the marketing firm's president, will lead the airport's campaign, said Penny Chua, airport marketing director.

Chua said it is important for the airport to build long-term contacts with China-based cargo carriers.

"The focus is obviously cargo, because that's a big thing we have missing at this airport," she said.

"We think that his services, somebody on site in China, will consistently put that message in front of these groups," Chua said.

Among the firm's duties for the year:

--Develop a China-specific Web site for the airport.

--Attend trade shows.

--Market directly to potential air-cargo carriers.

"We're not sure where it will go," said Michael Burrows, the airport's assistant director. "But we decided to give him a chance and see what happens."

Burrows said the airport still needs to complete its new fuel farm and control tower renovations before cargo operations could begin.