17 Feb 2013

IPETA – latest update

The following letter from the IPC President, Graeme Windsor has been circulated to all delegates giving an update on the latest news on the :

"International Parachuting Events and Tours Agency Limited (IPETA)

The Minutes of the 2013 IPC Plenary Meeting are almost complete and will soon be ready for distribution.

In the Minutes you will find a report on the Canopy Piloting (CP) tour project. It was a pleasure to have FAI Deputy President Alvaro d’Orleans Borbon at the Meeting and available for meaningful discussions on finding an acceptable way forward, following the rather difficult times that IPC has faced in trying to implement last year’s Plenary
decision to establish IPETA and to work on the development of a professional CP tour.

It was clear that there is strong interest from the IPC delegates on this matter, and this letter is one of a series intended to keep you up to date on IPETA developments as they occur.    Since the Plenary meeting in Banja Luka, a number of things have happened.

1. The FAI Executive Board (EB) has met and agreed to release funds for IPETA use upon formal request by IPC. This initial approval directly relates to making the CP tour a viable marketable proposal. The ball is now in IPC/IPETA’s court on this issue. The momentum that was in place over 12 months ago has now to be re-established, the business plan needs to be updated and a new company team put together. This will not happen overnight, but at least we now have a clearer pathway forward.

2. Prior to the Plenary Meeting, the IPC Bureau had agreed to transfer ownership of IPETA to FAI on the understanding that IPC would retain operational control of IPETA. Alvaro d’Orleans Borbon stated during the course of the Plenary Meeting that the EB would obtain legal advice on the merits of retaining IPETA as a UK company or establishing a new Swiss company. This legal advice has now been received and has been reviewed by the IPC Bureau. According to the advice, there is a little difference in the mechanics of following either course in terms of cost and time. Accordingly and after careful consideration the IPC Bureau is of the opinion that IPETA should remain as a UK Company, with ownership being transferred to the FAI.

3. The EB has put forward a proposed framework under which IPETA will operate within FAI. It is currently under discussion and development, but the basic premises agreed so far, but subject to further discussion, mainly on reporting and oversight, are: -

Overall responsibilities.
a.    IPC defines the event, provides initial financing and will be in charge of
b.    To assist in finding external investments, the EB has pre-approved funds for a study to upgrade the current CP Tour project into a complete investment viable marketable proposal, subject to a formal request by the IPC.
c.    Each party shall ensure full transparency and coordination in protecting the FAI marketing, branding and media rights, and do their utmost to avoid duplication and/or conflicts.

Allocation of outcome.
a.  Any dividends paid by IPETA to FAI will be added to the IPC funds held by
b.  Experience gained will be made available to other FAI/ASC commercial

Organizational structure
a.    FAI will acquire IPETA, an incorporated UK company for this purpose.
b.  IPC will appoint a team that will have a majority of the Board of Directors of
IPETA and will ensure competent operational and financial management of
c.    The EB will be represented on the Board, by appointment of one or two
Directors. These Directors shall have full access to company data.

Reporting and oversight
Regular accounting and managerial reports will be provided to the IPC and to the EB, who in turn will report to the General Conference.

While the finer details are still being worked through, it is now time for IPETA to develop the CP tour into a viable marketable proposal. To do this, the search has begun for a professional person, with the right skills.

Delegates are invited to ask suitable marketing professionals to submit a resume and expression of interest in doing this for IPETA on a paid professional basis. These may be sent to gwindsor@fai.org as soon as possible but no later than 28 February 2013.

In other news, I wish to report that the FAI Air Sports Marketing & Events (FAME) company recently sent a proposal to the London Major Events organisation promoting the concept of an air sports event. As expected London Major Events contacted the FAI member, the Royal Aero Club who in turn contacted the British Parachute Association (BPA). Neither the Royal Aero Club nor the BPA had been informed by FAME or the FAI of the approach and proposal to London Major Events.

The matter has been brought to the attention of the FAI Executive Board so that it may deal with not only a misleading claim that FAME is a fully owned FAI company, (24.5% is owned by a third party) but also not keeping the UK NAC informed. Of further concern to the IPC Bureau is the seeming disregard for FAI Statutes, which allocate the responsibility for all air sport matters to the relevant FAI Air Sport Commissions. Let us hope that this was an honest mistake borne out of new project enthusiasm, and that it will not affect the seemingly earnest efforts being made by IPC and FAI EB officers in breaking new ground in bringing professional air sport events to the public.

Blue Skies,

Graeme Windsor
President, IPC"