Despite more pressing epidemiological topics, we would be remiss if we didn’t take a moment to acknowledge 2021 as our 45th year in business at Skytech. I say acknowledge instead of celebrate because, well, you know. If we mind our manners through the first half of the year maybe we can have a proper celebration later on.
Happy Anniversary to Skytech Travel, LLC as this year we celebrate our fifth year as an FAA Part 135 Certificate holder. After years of effort and the support of everyone in the company, we were awarded an Air Carrier Certificate in March 2016. It stands out as one of the latest in a series of major milestones throughout our 45-year history. Our subsequent turbojet endorsement and the addition of a Pilatus PC-24 to the Certificate only adds to its stature. In the next few weeks, Skytech will be the first company in the world to have an M600 with Emergency Autoland available for Charter. I thought the first robot I would ever have a personal relationship with might be one that showed up to babysit me in a Nursing Home somewhere. As it turns out, I have underestimated the pace of advancing technology – the Piper M600 is a flying robot. Now, it’s a One Trick Pony, so to speak, because all it does is figure out that you are incapacitated, tells the passengers what it is doing, lands the airplane at an appropriate airport, and tells them when to open the door. One Trick, but that trick is a dandy. People have been talking about driverless cars for years and here comes an airplane that lands itself if the pilot cannot. You really do have to experience it to believe it (and we can arrange that).
The addition of the M600 is just another example of “revenue creep” at Skytech, if you will. It’s safe to say that one of the reasons that we have experienced no major business setbacks in the past year is because of the broad revenue base that we have created through the years along with realistic anticipation of the next “Black Swan” event. True to form, a pandemic was never on our radar. After experiencing tech bubbles, terror attacks, grounding AD’s, and a worldwide financial meltdown, we do Yeomans’ work in dealing with catastrophes.
Finally, let me express my personal appreciation to the two people at Skytech who have seen as much of this journey as I have – Dave Conover and Ann Parks. It has been quite a ride. Of all the special people at Skytech, without them, the train would’ve jumped the track somewhere along the line. Instead, we’ll just chug along toward the 50-year station. As of today, we are right on schedule.