GA’s Financial Gurus See Some Signs For Hope…
While there wasn’t all that much to see and do at this year’s AOPA Expo/Summit/SnoozeFest, A small cadre of ANN and Aero-TV folks did their best to gauge the state of the industry by chatting up a number of the folks that have been slogging away despite the worst economy in many moons. We got particularly lucky in being able to grab a few minutes with the folks of Air Fleet Capital, Inc., who genuinely possess some of GA’s most expert insights into the true health of this business’s current state.
Stephen L. Smestad, is the President & CEO of AirFleet and boasts over 30 years experience in aviation. Smestad founded AirFleet Capital, Inc. in 1994. Born and raised in “Big Sky Country” he received his MBA in Finance from the University of Montana. Steve has been involved in aviation and financing his entire career and has held numerous positions with aircraft manufacturers including sales, contracts, customer support and finance. He served as President, CEO and Member of the Board for a multi-billion dollar aerospace manufacturer and has been involved with the launch and delivery of new aircraft to the market. Steve is an active member of several aviation associations including AOPA, ABS, as well as a Lifetime Member of EAA. An avid flying enthusiast with a passion for general aviation, Steve is an instrument-rated pilot who began flying with his Dad in 1958.
AirFleet shares its expertise via a series of partnerships with other entities in aviation, including manufacturers, dealers, and industry organizations — all to assist buyers with financing and developing creative programs to get people into their dreams. Some of these programs include: a factory lease program through Beechcraft, manufacturer financing partnerships through Mooney and Piper, creation and financing support of the Bell Helicopter 360° Ownership Program, a partnership with I Fly America, and a partnership with the EAA. AirFleet Capital continues its dedication to finding the best programs for consumers and supporting their valued relationships as Piper Financial Services, Mooney Capital and I Fly America’s financing partner.
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