Curt and René Banglesdorf help their clients achieve their dreams / By Ayanna Estelle / Photo by Rudy Arocha
The pin-up girl gracing Charlie Bravo Aviation’s logo looks fondly out in to the distance, emblematic of the art found on the noses of military aircraft. WWII reminds owners Charlie Bravo and Curt and René Banglesdorf of a time when Americans worked with a give-it-all-you’ve-got dedicated and honest approach. These traits characterize their company, one that knows its clients have a need to trust in the people handling the affairs of their most prized possessions, their aircraft.
The traditional values the Banglesdorfs live by, which stem from the 1940s, a generation comprised of people they admire and respect, make them stand out from other aviation company owners.
“In the WWII-era, handshakes actually meant something; they were authentic,” Curt Banglesdorf says.
Charlie Bravo Aviation is an Austin area company specializing in private aviation, brokering, selling, acquiring and trading aircraft. With the recent addition of charter services, Charlie Bravo strives to help customers get where they are going as expeditiously as possible. This is not a conventional aviation business, and with every authentic handshake at the end of a business deal, the company is raising the bar for how customers should be treated and how a business should be run.
Charlie Bravo is innovative because it applies a strong research-based and informative business model. While most companies advertise and wait for their clientele to come to them, Charlie Bravo goes directly to the customer. With a team of analysts, each knowledgeable on certain types of planes, employees contact current owners to discuss the worth of their aircraft. Using recent comparable sales prices, Charlie Bravo stays current on aircraft values.
“Aviation selling is not like real estate; you can’t just look up an MLS to know how much an aircraft sells for. It’s not public knowledge,” Curt Banglesdorf says.
Charlie Bravo contacts owners to ask if they are looking to sell or upgrade. Some jump on the offer, relieved to put their most valuable asset in the hands of a legitimate and competent broker. Others may not be ready for a change, but down the line when they are ready, you can bet they will remember the company that took the time to call and educate them before they signed their name on the dotted line.
Charlie Bravo strives to educate companies in order to erase the misconception that private aircrafts are only for wealthy, jet-setting CEOs. The majority of Charlie Bravo clients are mid-level companies with big aspirations that value time. Clients are not fat cats; they are “humanitarians and business professionals that need to make it to their son’s soccer game that evening,” Curt Banglesdorf says.
Charlie Bravo customers are looking to grow and maintain their companies with face-to-face meetings in multiple places, all achieved in one day and without being troubled by the long lines of ticket counters and security checkpoints. “Eighty-five percent of private aviation business is by small and midsized companies who want to respond quickly to things and get in and out,” René Banglesdorf says.
Clients also want to donate their time and aircraft for national disasters and people in need. Recently, a client donated their plane to transfer a heart-transplant patient to Ohio. Additionally, Charlie Bravo is part of Sky Hope, an organization that makes it easy for charitable individuals interested in giving a helping hand to get access to planes. The organization arranged for planes to take people and supplies to Haiti after the catastrophic earthquake in 2010.
Charlie Bravo Charter has been named Circuit of The America’s official helicopter shuttle and private-charter partner. In an effort to give the Formula 1 fans, teams and sponsors a hassle- and wait-free alternative to ground transportation, Charlie Bravo will fly attendees to and from the site via helicopter.
“It will take about twelve minutes from Austin Executive Airport to the track,” René Banglesdorf says, “and passengers will definitely arrive in style.”
Although there are many things that make Charlie Bravo stand out, the most notable is the leadership team, comprised of the Banglesdorfs, who have been married since college and have worked side by side for 10 years. They owe their success to their teamwork.
“Most companies have one top chief who is their best salesperson,” René Banglesdorf says. “Having two enables us to divide and conquer.”
The pair brings complementary skills to the table, René with her detail-oriented and strategic abilities, and Curt with his strong sales-oriented vision. The balance is vital.
The Banglesdorfs have given rise to a thriving business, one that originated with four employees and has grown to a team of analysts and consultants interacting with customers throughout the world. No matter which client or country they are working with, their deep-rooted ideals and traditions are evident. Their handshakes definitely have great meaning.
For more information, call Charlie Bravo Aviation at 512.868.9000 or visit wepushtin.com.