EBAA has responded to an open letter written by Luxaviation CEO Patrick Hansen, which announced the company’s withdrawal from EBACE 2019 due to high costs.
The letter, which can be read in full here was addressed to Athar Husain Khan, secretary general of EBAA, and voiced Hansen’s concerns over the rising costs of hosting the event in Geneva, Switzerland, which he claims has the highest average hotel daily rate in Europe at €242 (US$275) per night.
In the letter, which has been widely shared on social media, Hansen said, “Attending EBACE can easily cost businesses hundreds of thousands of euros in direct and indirect costs. We believe that moving EBACE to a less expensive city than Geneva would undoubtedly bring huge cost savings to exhibitors and attendees.
“We believe that EBAA should use its resources, financial and operational, to support the business aviation industry in Europe and not organize events that might be financially profitable for the EBAA but have counterproductive effects on the industry it serves.
“The time has come for EBACE to change. The event must respond to economic realities and EBAA should ask itself if an event in this format is truly representing the many facets of business aviation as claimed by its Expanding Horizons campaign.”
Responding to the letter, an EBAA spokesperson told sister publication Business Airport International, “The European Business Aviation Association regrets Luxaviation’s decision to limit their presence at EBACE 2019. It is our mission to enable responsible, sustainable growth for business aviation, enhancing connectivity and creating opportunities for our members.
“EBACE is an event which we consider to be a physical manifestation of our mission. It is the opportunity where our industry meets, shares knowledge and where we engage directly with our membership. During the many successful years of organizing EBACE in cooperation with the NBAA, we recognize the need for unceasing improvement and are working hard towards continuously meeting the needs and expectations of both the attendees and exhibitors.”
What do you think? Should future EBACE shows be relocated to another European city, or is Geneva, Switzerland, the best place for the event? Get in touch with your thoughts at firstname.lastname@example.org.