Once upon a time, the business aviation industry worked itself into a frenzy leading up to the NBAA convention, then heaved a collective sigh of relief when the show ended. Those days are long gone. A seemingly endless succession of business aviation conferences keeps OEMs and vendors busy year-round.

This month it’s the Dubai Air Show, a biennial event that in just 22 years has grown larger than NBAA. Nearly 1,000 exhibitors will serve well over 50,000 attendees. The show runs Nov. 13-17 at Dubai’s Airport Expo.

The Emerging Middle East

While much of the attention in recent months has focused on Asia – especially China – the Dubai Air Show serves as a potent reminder that the Middle East already is a strong and growing market for both commercial and business aviation. Several major announcements are expected at the show. The hope-inspiring events of the Arab Spring promise to add even more momentum to this surging market.

All of Wichita’s major manufacturers plan significant presences at the show, as do several Greteman Group clients, including FlightSafety International and Bombardier.

By the numbers, the United States continues to dominate business aviation. Analyses often focus on our ups and downs and view emerging markets elsewhere as a threat. But strong growth forecasts from Asia, the Middle East, Brazil and even Africa present a whole Brave New World of opportunity for aviation marketers. At the same time, our growing number of tools lets us reach people and places unimaginable even just a few years ago. It presents a new set of challenges, with enormous potential for those who are willing to embrace these new realities.