Ernie Edwards Appointed Chief Commercial Officer
Reno, Nevada — May 4, 2015 Aerion has appointed Ernest (Ernie) Edwards, one of business aviation’s most accomplished executives, as Senior Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer. He joins Aerion’s senior leadership and has responsibility for all sales activity related to the company’s Mach 1.5 AS2 supersonic business jet. Edwards reports to Aerion CEO Doug Nichols.
Edwards retired as president of Embraer Executive Jets at the end of 2013 and earlier served as that company’s vice president of sales & marketing for North America. In those roles (from 2005 to 2013), he helped build Embraer, a new entrant to business aviation, to become one of the industry’s leading brands.
“Ernie is known and respected throughout the business jet community around the globe,” said Nichols. “He understands our customer base, which, of course, encompasses the absolute elite users of business aircraft. His contribution to Aerion will be invaluable.”
“From his days at Embraer, and even earlier, Ernie has been a pioneer and a very successful one at that,” remarked Aerion Co-chairman Brian Barents. “We will benefit greatly from his vast experience and talents.”
A 45-year veteran of the industry, Edwards most recently served as non-executive chairman of Veling Tayara Ltd., a Dubai based company that provides structured operating leases for business jets and is a sister company of Veling Ltd., one of the world’s top 40 commercial leasing companies.
He has held senior management positions with Cessna and Gulfstream and is the former president of Swift Aviation Group, which introduced Embraer to the business aircraft market in 2002 by offering the Legacy 600, a variant of the Embraer EMB-135 regional jet.
“Aerion is taking dramatic steps forward as it expands relationships within the industry and adds to its exceptionally talented team,” commented Chairman Robert M. Bass. “The appointment of Ernie Edwards provides astute and tremendously capable leadership on the sales side that will substantially increase program momentum.”
Edwards is an ATP pilot, type rated in Citation series aircraft, and also holds an Airframe and Powerplant license. He is a 1972 graduate of Kelsterton College and speaks Arabic.
“The most rewarding times in my career have been those when I had the chance to run with a new idea, and remake the industry,” said Edwards. “Aerion will do more than that, it will simply revolutionize the way the world travels. I could not ask for a more exciting opportunity.”
Aerion, the industry leader in supersonic travel, is pioneering a new generation of efficient, economical, and environmentally responsible supersonic aircraft. The Mach 1.4 AS2 business jet is scheduled to begin flight testing in 2023. Aerion entered into a partnership with Boeing in February 2019 to develop the AS2 and advance the supersonic market. In October 2018, Aerion and GE Aviation unveiled the quiet and efficient GE AffinityTM engine, the first supersonic engine in more than 50 years.