By: Tony Kioussis, President, Asset Insight Inc.
We live in an information-rich environment that offers countless facts, opinions, and, at times, misleading data disguised as fact, on virtually any subject.
Our industry, having collected aircraft statistics for decades, often finds itself on the leading edge of data analysis, providing deep insight through quantitative analytics to aid decision-making. Furthermore, numerous entities are discovering ways to compile, analyze, and “translate” technical data into financial information, making facts once known only to, and understood by, “experts” readily available to the average consumer. Based on that, what will happen to all those professionals historically held in high-esteem as “industry experts?”
At a minimum, industry experts will have to merge onto the information highway. However, simply entering the flow of traffic will not be enough. They will also need to keep pace with, and actively access, new “information carriers” (information available through new, web-based sources) and keep up with the flow of “information traffic” that is generated at all hours of the day and night. Failing to do so, places the professionals at risk of knowing less than the clients they seek to help, thereby reducing the perceived, if not actual, value of their services.
There is a sea change occurring with respect to the amount and detail of information available to aircraft seekers and sellers – some of it factual, some of it not. It is up to each aircraft transaction professional to know what prospective aircraft clients are learning – sometimes about one or more aircraft the professional represents – in order to add value by separating fact from fiction. Until and unless they are able to do so, aircraft acquisition and sales professionals could find the value of their services decreasing, with a commensurate impact on the fees they are able to charge.
Take aircraft value information as one example. Aircraft buyers and sellers have historically relied on quarterly publications to provide such information. While those publications have done a commendable job in objectively reporting transaction figures, new, web-based entities are now able to track and report aircraft values virtually as soon as transactions happen.
Next, consider maintenance analytics, information that used to take days – if not weeks – to process can now be completed in a fraction of that time, and at a fraction of the cost, allowing a buyer or seller to place an aircraft value’s greatest “wild card” – its maintenance condition – into context.
Then, consider aircraft listed for sale. Determining available aircraft featuring a desired specification and an acceptable maintenance condition used to be the purview of aircraft Brokers – one reason for using such professionals when one sought to acquire an aircraft. Today, Brokers themselves make it easy for potential buyers to collate a list of acceptable aircraft by simply using the Internet, along with sufficient specification and maintenance information to allow consumers – with the help of available web-based analytics – to evaluate which aircraft they would like to pursue.
Of course, aircraft Brokers have always brought a great deal more than “identification services” to the acquisition process – and that’s what makes NARA’s Certified Dealer/Broker Program so valuable for a NARA client. The NARA certification program requires Dealer/Broker members to attend specific educational sessions covering everything from transaction structures, to market research, to regulatory and legal changes. However, Brokers seeking to maintain a knowledge edge with respect to the aircraft they represent will also need to know what a prospective client knows – before they receive the prospect’s call. In today’s information-rich environment, the person on the other end of the phone may think they know more than the aircraft sales professional. The best way to lose their edge is for the sales professional to prove the prospect right.
About Asset Insight Inc.
Asset Insight, Inc. was founded to provide asset evaluation and financial optimization services. The company has established the “Asset Grading System Standard”(Patent Applied For), and related analyses, thereby providing all entities with a financial interest in an asset the ability to translate an asset’s technical condition into easy-to-understand, actionable financial information.
Asset Insight, Inc. is independent of any manufacturer, appraisal firm, financial services firm, or technical services facility. Accordingly, the company is able provide an unbiased view of an asset’s condition with respect to its technical status and related financial exposure.
Asset Insight, Inc. is managed by a group of business, technical and financial professionals with significant experience in various aspects of the asset management industry. See more at www.assetinsightinc.com