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Aero Business 101: Are You Missing The Opportunities In Aviation?

What Is Standing Between You And A Successful Business

By David Juwel

Previously in ANN, I wrote two articles encouraging people to get out there and start their own aviation business (“How anyone can make at least $150,000 every year in their own aviation business” and “Any pilot can fly an aviation business”).

When you look at the more common aviation businesses, they primarily offer flight instruction, maintenance, aircraft rental & sales, hanger & ramp space, and accessory equipment sales. Many people may not attempt to start an aviation business because all the business space is taken at their airport, or they don’t have any interest in the few areas mentioned, or they don’t have the tremendous capital that might be required.

I consider those to be limited excuses for limited opportunities. The fact is there are over 1000 different types of business endeavors that service the aviation industry. Following are the ten strategic areas where virtually all of the profit is made in the field of aviation:

  • Fundamental Aviation Activities.
  • Aviation Information Activities
  • Aviation Retail, Rental and Direct Mail
  • Aviation Facilities
  • Aviation Support Activities
  • Aviation Research, Design, Development, Construction, Testing, Manufacturing, and Improvements.
  • Aviation Sales & Rental Activities
  • Aviation Training and Evaluation
  • Aviation Non-profit Organizations and Associations
  • Miscellaneous Aviation Activities

Ten strategic areas, but 1,000 different activities make their home within those ten areas. Incredible! This is why I am convinced that any skills, talents, training and experience you now possess, can be plugged into the aviation industry somewhere. You already have the talent and the skills you just need to laterally transfer them.

I remember asking an aviation small business owner why he wasn’t more proactive at the fly-in he was attending. He spent nearly the whole event sitting in his easy chair under a tent, only talking to the people that approached HIM. He stated that he only wants to work hard enough to make enough money to pay the fly-in fees and the cost of transportation (he sleeps and eats in an RV). He enjoys just sitting around and hangar flying with other aviators. His way of doing business pays for his “aviation habit” and that’s his sole intent. Talk about “laid back” business management. In one sense you might envy him, but I couldn’t help being frustrated because this man was only making a few hundred dollars when he could have easily been making thousands of dollars, without much greater effort.

Do you think you could start a business and compete against someone like that business owner? If you work as hard for yourself as you do for your current employer, I suspect that you could, and I encourage you to step up to the plate and do it. Isn’t it time that aviation paid you?

Wishing you blue skies and greater profitability.

FMI: Contact David Juwel


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