CCIM Feature Business Issues

Business Aviation

Flying to meet prospective clients face-to-face spurs business expansion.

Time is one of the most valuable resources commercial real estate professionals possess. From impressing clients to growing and managing real estate portfolios, bandwidth remains limited. With only 24 hours in a day, investing time wisely is critical to success. 

For individuals looking to maximize their time while growing their business, private aviation serves as one of the best tools. Those in the business refer to private aviation as business aviation.  By flying private, either on a company-owned aircraft or through charter services, commercial real estate professionals can simplify the travel process, use their time efficiently, and experience increased business growth.

Achieve Business Growth

According to the National Association of Realtors' 2016 Q4 Commercial Real Estate Market Survey, the volume of investment sales has accelerated, with 69 percent of Realtors reporting closed transactions. As the economy remains on the upswing and the real estate market capitalizes, finding new ways to extend commercial real estate professionals' reach to out-of-market areas becomes a critical strategy for building business.

It's no coincidence 88 percent of the top 50 companies in the Forbes Global 2000 are business aircraft users, according to a study by NEXA  Advisors LLC. Business growth is the  No. 1 reason companies invest in business aviation. Their employees can arrive where and when they need to be. They also recognize the immeasurable value of a face-to-face meeting.

Relationships drive business in the commercial real estate industry. While technology has opened the lines of communication, nothing can replace personal contact.

Increase Access

Not all business occurs in Los Angeles, Chicago, or New York City. Often, clients are based in smaller markets, such as Eden Prairie, Minn. Private aviation provides increased access to secondary and tertiary areas. In fact, commercial flights can only access roughly 500 airports, while private flights have access to more than 5,000 airports.

When time and business are on the line, the ability to arrive at the desired location quickly is desirable. Often what spurs companies to first use business aviation, specifically charter, is an issue professionals didn't anticipate, such as taking a last-minute trip to survey a new job or visit a client during a crisis.

When examining the cost of a charter service, it's surprisingly close to the cost of flying commercial. Last-minute commercial flights can range from $600 to $1,200, round-trip. By using a charter option to go the same distance, the total cost of this flight for up to six people comes to about $6,500 or $1,083 each.

Boost Talent Acquisition

According to ManpowerGroup, 40 percent of all global employers report talent shortages. As these workforce shortages continue to expand and affect the industry, companies must have initiatives in place to attract and retain top talent.

The opportunity to travel is an effective recruitment tool. However, relentless business travel can wear down even the most dedicated employee and contribute to the turnover of talented individuals.

Business aviation gives employees the ability to take a business trip and return in time for dinner. They will experience less burnout. 

If a business isn't looking to hire, but instead wants to capitalize on the time and bandwidth of its current team members, business aviation can allow these employees to use their time to build business and create winning strategies.

According to a National Business Aviation Association survey, passengers are 20 percent more productive on board a company aircraft than in the office. This is particularly important as the use of laptops, iPads, and other business tools on commercial flights comes under scrutiny for safety reasons. When commercial real estate professionals fly private, they can work on any device of their choosing.

Helping employees create true work and life balance leads to continuous growth for businesses by creating a happier, more productive workforce.

Maximize Efficiencies

Whether looking for efficiencies in time or budget, business aviation helps commercial real estate professionals do more with less. For example, once last-minute pricing, rental cars, and hotels are accounted for, making the jump to flying private is often a cost-effective alternative to the commercial route. And while the value of being there can't be directly quantified, it is worthwhile when cultivating relationships and often can result in increased revenue opportunities through deals that may not close without travel.

Business aviation allows commercial real estate professionals to wisely invest their time, capital, and people. Whether through the purchase of an aircraft or reservations on a charter, employees go places quickly and effectively, while growing the business.  

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Angelo Fiataruolo

Angelo Fiataruolo is general manager of KCAC Aviation in Olathe, Kan.  Contact him at

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