AERO BLEU AIRWAYS: WHEN CROOKS GET INTO AVIATION
This story would be difficult for the average person to believe. But aviation market professionals are forced to periodically deal with laymen who imagine themselves to be cool businessmen without having a thorough knowledge of their subject. As a result, not only they suffer losses, but also everyone who, out of stupidity or carelessness, decided to contact such idiots.
Our today's heroes, the Philippine company AERO BLEU AIRWAYS, were apparently very much inspired by the real “gold rush” which swept the cargo market during the Covid-19 epidemic. Indeed, while the passenger market froze and aircraft were grounded for a long time, the cargo transportation market experienced not just a heyday, but a real boom akin to the gold rush in Alaska in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Accordingly, the plots of the “Covid period” in aviation sometimes resemble plots from Jack London’s novels.
The extreme shortage then was a free cargo aircraft with decent capacity. Prices for a fully loaded B-747 flight on the route China - Europe have risen from initial rates of $500,000 - $550,000 to $1,100,000 - $1,200,000 literally within 3-4 weeks. The situation worsened when some Chinese airports had stopped accepting so-called pax converted aircraft that were not equipped with a cargo door.
Those who had a suitable cargo fleet at that time became rich very quickly. This is exactly what our unfortunate aviators fell for, they began to scour the market in search of the desired aircraft in order to take it on a wet lease. Fortunately, the owner of the company AERO BLEU AIRWAYS, a Philippine congressman, and before his political career - soap opera actor Danilo (Dan) FERNANDEZ, had the money for this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Danilo_Fernandez
Since our heroes didn't have their own reputation in the cargo transportation market and serious operators didn't want to talk to them, they began to approach charter brokers who had the necessary professional contacts. Thus, they contacted the company, which subsequently very much regretted its decision to find an aircraft for them, and afterwards was forced to create a case in BLACKLIST.AERO Register.
Congressman Fernandez personally participated in all the negotiations, showing his involvement and "advancement". After the broker had found a B757F for them, owned by the Georgian operator GEO SKY (which is important to know for further understanding of the situation), things went uphill for our heroes. The aircraft flew to Hong Kong several times.
For obvious reasons, there was no end of clients. Moreover, the broker who had leased the aircraft to the Filipinos additionally took upon himself the provision of fuel, order of handling services and obtaining permits for the aircraft. On credit…
The problems began when AERO BLEU AIRWAYS wanted to fly on the routes Singapore - Philippines and Japan - Philippines. The Philippine and Japanese authorities did not give permission for these flights. This is where the commercial fervor of our heroes from AERO BLEU AIRWAYS quickly faded. They not only stopped paying for the lease of the aircraft, but also did not pay for the fuel, handling services and permits for already completed flights to Hong Kong that were provided on credit. As a result, the debt for leasing of the aircraft and provided services has reached $751,536.
As the top manager of the AERO BLEU AIRWAYS company, Jesse E. Santos, subsequently wrote in his explanation to the administration of the BLACKLIST.AERO Registry, verbatim: “They bring an aircraft to us without anywhere to go. It doesn’t have any permit or approval.”
This is very reminiscent of the story about Winnie the Pooh and his famous phrase: “These are the wrong sort of bees! Quite the wrong sort. So I should think they would make the wrong sort of honey!”
What could have happened so that the aircraft could not fly?! The question of questions! For non-professionals of the cargo market...
Although any specialist will immediately remember that Singapore and Japan comply with the Principle of the fifth freedom. And that an aircraft with Georgian registration, which is in the registry of a Georgian airline, can fly from Singapore or Japan only to Georgia! And in order for it to fly from there to the Philippines, it needs to be registered with a Philippine operator!
And AERO BLEU AIRWAYS doesn't have its own AOC, despite the pretentious prefix AIRWAYS. And they didn’t plan to do such “cumbersome” procedures. For what?! It’s enough to register the company “Horns and Hooves AIRWAYS” and millions are already in our pocket!
The most interesting thing is that before the described case, AERO BLEU AIRWAYS already had a similar experience with a B747 of an American operator SKY LEASE CARGO leased through a broker who become one more victim. According to our information, this broker company now intends to sue AERO BLEU AIRWAYS demanding compensation of more than $3M. So, for Congressman Fernandez the fun is just beginning...
But for our heroes any arguments are of no use. You won’t believe it, but not long ago as many as 5 representatives of this magnificent company arrived in Georgia in order to find the “right” aircraft that would fly wherever they tell to fly!
Needless to say, when the question of the fifth freedom, traffic rights and other “minor” issues arose once again, the very persistent representatives of AERO BLEU AIRWAYS once again thought about the “wrong bees”.
In this regard, I would like to address Congressman Danilo Fernandes: I have repeatedly tried to interview you regarding this case, to hear your arguments. But judging by your reaction, you are afraid to face the problem head on.
Speaking of the face...
You have such a well-groomed, one might say, sleek face. Please keep going to spa-salons and working on your image. Liposuctions, Botox, whatever. For a Filipino politician, this is probably useful. Just stay away of aviation! Forever!
History knows many cases when former actors became politicians. Good and not so good. There are even a couple of cool presidents, in the USA and Ukraine. Maybe there are somewhere more of them.
But in aviation you need to work not with your face, but with your brains! Well, if you and your henchmen have such a hard time with this, why do you continue to create debts in the aviation market?! I would like to say that you make a fool of yourself, if there was not the huge amount of money that you now owe to everyone, but refuse to pay off. Your former partners, who believed in your charisma and charm, are definitely not laughing now. They have to pay bills.
Clean up your act, Dan Fernandez. Otherwise, you will always be the Philippine Winnie the Pooh.