BENGALURU: A big opportunity opens up in North Karnataka for those aspiring for an aviation career as a Bengaluru-based IT firm is gearing up to set up the first Flying Training Organisation (FTO) in Belagavi.
It goes without saying that the mood is completely upbeat at Samvardhana Technologies Private Ltd in Rajaji Nagar here. Its Director, the 52-year-old B G Kumaraswamy, a glider and private pilot, is relieved that an ambition he had nursed since 2005 is finally set to be realised.
The school will come up on 5,000 square metres inside the Belagavi Airport. A second such school will be set up here by the Delhi-based RedBird Aviation.
Speaking to TNIE, Kumaraswamy said his firm was in the process of procuring 6 training aircraft from across the world. “They will be the usual small sized ones which can seat a maximum of four. We are looking at buying five aircraft with single engine and one multi-engined one,” he said. Six flight instructors would be hired apart from a Chief Flight Instructor.
The organization is likely to spend anywhere between Rs 10 and Rs 15 crore to put in place a hangar, maintenance facility, class rooms and an administrative building inside the airport. “We are looking at making it operational in a year’s time from now,” Kumaraswamy said.
Under the contract, the school will pay the government Rs 720 for every hour flown by each aircraft with a minimum payment for 3,000 hours to be made annually for each one.
An NCC cadet who received training at the Jakkur Flying School, the Mysuru-born entrepreneur with a Diploma in Computer Science always wanted to be a part of the Aviation industry. “I got into Aero Sports from 2017 by organizing Paragliding, Parasailing and Paramotoring in Bengaluru. It was doing very well financially but the government wanted us to shut shop and we ended up doing that,” he said.
Kumaraswamy, who will take on the role of Accountability Manager at the new school is confident of churning out 50 students annually. “Though it takes anywhere between 2 years and 3 years presently to obtain a Commercial Flying Licence, I plan to help my students get it within one year. They have to clear the exams set by DGCA too,” he said.
A PUC (with Science as a subject) is the minimum qualification for admission. The fee is likely to be fixed between Rs 35 lakh to Rs 40 lakh a student. Samvardhana Technologies has applied for a new name for its flying school and is awaiting clearances for the same, he added.