What is your time worth?
That’s what some of the Omni Aircraft Sales executive team say private aircraft ownership boils down to. For many busy executives, C-Suite or CEOs, their time has extraordinary value. Dan Burnstein, Chairman of Omni, Mike Skow, President and CEO, and Anthony Ethridge, Vice President of Sales, quickly cut to the chase of what drives their industry.
Put succinctly, Skow said that private aircraft ownership is, “a tool that allows you to do more.”
Flying private allows you to circumvent security but still meets security protocols. It allows you to travel when it suits you. You fly directly to your destination instead of navigating concourses and connections. Sometimes more than one.
“You go where you want to go when you want to go,” said Burnstein on one of the prime advantages of flying private aircraft.
“There’s really no better way to get there. Yes, it’s about saving time but flying privately also gives that time back to you,” added Ethridge, “because you can use that time to get more done. Work, meetings, whatever you need to do, you get that time back by flying private.”
These veterans of the private aviation industry should know what drives their clients. Mike and Anthony have over 50 years of cumulative experience in private aviation. Mike started out as a pilot. Anthony has worked in private aviation for the duration of his career.
With nearly a lifetime of experience, Burnstein’s history goes back even further. He is the 2nd generation of Omni as his father was the founder. Dan grew up in Omni’s hangars and offices. After graduating from Oklahoma State University, he became a flight instructor and joined as a first officer and worked his way up to Chairman. “We are fortunate and proud of it. We worked hard to do what we do,” said Burnstein.
“Most everyone at Omni Aircraft Sales has a passion for what we do,” said Ethridge, “and we love what we do.”
They all agree their business model depends on relationships. Not just initiating them but fostering them as well. There is such a wide chasm between flying commercial and private, the commercial market segment is not the main differentiator.
“The single most important part,” said Skow, “is that we always deliver exceptional client experiences. On both sides of the equations,” added Ethridge, “for buyer and seller alike.”
But the key to success with Omni Aircraft sales is transparency.
Whether a client has no idea what they are looking for or has done all their research, Omni Aircraft Sales goes out of the way to provide a fully transparent process.
“Transparency is at the core of what we do in our culture and as a company. We tell our customers the whole story. They can make their own decision. That is who we are,” said Burnstein. “If someone has a question, we give them an answer. If we don’t know the answer we look it up.”
“We keep in mind that we are guiding clients through a business that is not very transparent,” said Ethridge. “There simply is not a lot of public knowledge and we’ve created and put together an expertise to find that knowledge.”
Omni Aircraft Sales employs a team of professionals who comb through all aspects of the transaction. From data on inspections, service histories, and airframes to warranties, avionics and updates.
“We then share that knowledge so that the person can make the best decision for themselves and every aspect of the business,” said Skow.
This dedication to transparency allows the client to make the most well-advised decision possible on their purchase.
Ethridge employed a metaphor of taking your car to a mechanic: are you going to be inclined to revisit the mechanic who takes your car behind a wall and returns with a non-itemized bill or would you be more trusting of a mechanic who guides you through the issues while pointing out each one to explain the estimate?
The fact is, each client seeks Omni Aircraft Sales for unique reasons. Whether entering the private aircraft market for a business decision or a purchase to offset income through depreciation or simply for more leisure time, Omni Aircraft Sales provides the clearest picture of your transaction from beginning to end.
“Ultimately, it’s about cultivating that relationship,” said Skow.
“When we discuss what they are looking for in a plane and mission parameters, we learn about who they are and where they are in life, their goals and to some extent, their dreams,” said Ethridge. It becomes the goal of the Omni Aircraft Sales team to develop that connection for the long-term benefit of their client.
Having a client leave the aircraft transaction process happy drives referrals. And referrals drive success. In the rarified air of private aviation transaction, Omni Aircraft Sales knows these referrals matter. So, every single potential client matters.
“When you treat people right, they come back again and again and refer us to their friends. As a business that’s exactly where you want to be,” said Burnstein. “That formula works really well for Omni.”
“The folks who own airplanes are obviously wealthy individuals,” said Skow. “Same goes for business leaders who fly for that purpose. I can think of several examples where we had an aircraft owner who referred several friends.” These relationships matter for Omni Aircraft Sales who compete against larger shops for a relatively small number of clients.
“Even some of the largest operators in the industry, who don’t focus completely on the buying or selling of aircraft but deal strictly in operations of fractional and charters send potential clients to us,” said Ethridge. Even in the limited number of charter providers, Omni Aircraft Sales carries a good reputation amongst those providers as a leading expert in the field and “They know what we are about and can be a trusted referral partner,” added Ethridge.
“They call us up and they say, ‘We know you’re good at what you do from an operations perspective. We’ve seen that you buy and sell airplanes as well. We’d like to refer you to our clients.’ And because they know we’re good folks, and we do things the right way,” added Skow.
*Omni Aircraft Sales advises all clients to discuss tax liabilities and benefits with their respective tax professional.
With Omni Aircraft Sales, all these relationships matter.