What an honor it was last week to meet with Washington State Governor Jay Inslee, who personally was very interested in supersonic aviation. We had a great conversation about the impact supersonic flight will have on policy, economic growth, and business in the region. Governor Inslee was happy to hear that we had toured Paine Field in Seattle and were considering other areas in the state for some of our facilities.
The state and King County Economic Development Offices, along with Paine Field authorities, gave us a wonderful tour of Paine Field and talked about the large aerospace community of over 200 companies and 200,000 aerospace workers in the region. It is quite an impressive facility, dedicated to aircraft development and manufacturing. Inslee and I also talked about Moses Lake and Spokane fields.
I had very productive meetings with LMI, Esterline, Greenpoint, and Teague on working together to develop the Spike S-512 Quiet Supersonic Jet. During the AFA Aerospace Summit, we had a number of impromptu discussions with executives from Parker, Mitsubishi, BAE, and others. Our team will be following up on those discussions over the next few weeks. I expect that some valuable partnerships will be developed in the coming weeks and months.
My keynote speech on “Supersonic Flight: the Future of Aviation” started with an overview of why we travel in the first place, and how faster travel improves those opportunities. I believe that supersonic business travel is primarily about building better relationships with customers, suppliers, and partners. I also talked about innovations in aerospace and the progress Spike Aerospace has made in design and development of the S-512. My talk ended with evaluation criteria for manufacturing locations and timing.
Kelly Maloney, CEO of the AFA, organized a wonderful event, bringing together the aerospace community in Washington state. Thank you, Kelly!
A tour of the massive Boeing facility where 787s and 777s were being assembled was equally impressive. The Boeing DreamLifter was taxiing on a runway as a test flight of a 777 was underway. Off to the side, over $6 billion worth of aircraft were awaiting delivery or final sign-off.
Later this year, we will be touring facilities in Florida and California. I’ll personally be at NBAA 2016 in Orlando, FL. I hope to see you there.