Consultancy Team


Rob Morris

Head of Consultancy


Rob joins Ascend with more than twenty years industry experience as a commercial aviation analyst.

He began his career in the sector in 1990 as a Marketing Executive at British Aerospace (Regional Aircraft) in Hatfield before moving on in 1993 to join the Aerospace team at the UK Government’s Department of Trade and Industry. Whilst there he was involved in the assessment of projects as diverse as the DHC-8-400, Airbus A340-500 / 600, Rolls-Royce Trent 500 / 8104 / 900, Airbus A380 and Bombardier CRJ900 / BRJ-X / CSeries, specifically delivering all aspects of market analysis and market forecasting in support of the UK’s investment in those programme.

In 2005 Rob returned to BAE Systems Asset Management in Hatfield where, as Vice President, Marketing & Analysis, he was responsible for market and strategy analysis in support of the regional aircraft lessor’s business winning process. Following the sale of the Asset Management business to Falko Regional Aircraft in July 2011, Rob subsequently joined Ascend in January 2012.



George Dimitroff

Head of Valuations

George joined Ascend in 2005, having previously worked for Airbus and United Airlines in various roles. 

He focuses mainly on aircraft and engine valuations, but also writes regular updates on the latest state of the aviation marketplace. George holds a degree in Air Transport Engineering from City University in London.



Peter Morris

Chief Economist

Photo - Peter Morris

Peter is a veteran of over 25 years’ in the air transport industry.  His expertise spans strategic and economic studies, industry forecasts and a range of traffic, capacity, revenue and cost analyses.

Before joining Ascend in 2003, Peter was Chief Economist and Director, Research Consultancy for the International Air Transport Association (IATA), where he developed IATA’s Aviation Information & Research (AIR) department into a leading global commercial supplier of air transport information and research.

Peter is a regular media commentator on the aviation industry and the impact of new market developments. He holds a BSc in Economics and a MSc in Energy Economics.


Joanna Lu

Head of Advisory, Asia


Based in Hong Kong, Joanna's focus is on global airport projects, project management as well as supporting the Asian business development.  Joanna joined Ascend in 2010, having previously worked for GCW Consulting and Shanghai Airlines in various roles. 

With 10 years experience in the Asian Commercial Aviation Industry, Joanna brings valuable project management, aviation demand analysis and airport strategic and technical planning experiences.

Joanna holds an MSc in Airport Planning and Management from Loughborough University, and a BEng in Aviation Administration from Shanghai University of Engineering Science.  


Photo - Paul Hayes

Paul Hayes

Safety and Insurance Director

Few people in aviation can match Paul’s nearing 35 years’ experience in air safety and his achievements as a trusted advisor to governments, regulators, insurance markets and airlines worldwide. Paul joined Ascend in 1974, having previously worked for National Air Traffic Services at London Heathrow Airport.

With his extensive international consultancy experience, Paul has led the development of several of Ascend’s key aviation and space offerings.

Paul’s unique achievements include assisting Russia to present the former USSRs’ full airline safety record to the international aviation insurance market – work that led to close co-operation between Russia and the CIS and the release of data on some 600 airline accidents not previously recorded in the West.  Paul has also been instrumental in managing the research and production of the CP479, the World Aircraft Accident Summary in collaboration with UK’s Civil Aviation Authority.



Chris Seymour

Head of Market Analysis

With more than 23 years' aviation experience, Chris has responsibility for many of Ascend's comprehensive market studies, covering a wide variety of aircraft types.

He also performs appraisals of commercial aircraft and prepares the company's forecast of aircraft deliveries. Chris is a specialist in helicopter valuations.



Richard Evans.

Richard Evans

Senior Consultant

Richard joins Ascend after 27 years with Rolls-Royce, where – most recently as head of market analysis within the civil aerospace division – he studied major trends for airlines and operating lessors, in addition to advising on business-improvement activities undertaken by the engine maker.

Richard will work on advisory and valuations projects across the whole commercial aviation sector. As an airline and aerospace expert, Richard has frequently presented at or chaired international conferences, including for Routes.



Tony Brooks

Senior Aviation Analyst

Anthony has worked in the Consultancy arm of Ascend for over 14 years and is a trusted advisor to Banks, Lessors, Lawyers and Manufacturers.

Anthony specialises in the appraisal of Executive Jets Helicopters and General Aviation aircraft and is one of the few certified ISTAT (International Society of Transport Aircraft Trading) Appraisers in the world. Anthony has attained comprehensive experience as an Expert Witness in various Executive Jet , Helicopter and General Aviation assignments including those where a Diminution in Value is contested. 




Photo - Chris Willis

Chris Wills

Valuations Manager

Chris joined Ascend in May 2007 as a member of the Data Team. Having graduated from Loughborough University in 2006 with a degree in Air Transport Management with a Diploma in Industrial studies. 

In November 2007 Chris moved on to the year long Management Development Programme and covered positions in the Consultancy, Airport Economics and Product Development. Having completed the programme Chris became a permanent member of the Consultancy Department. Following a secondment to the New York Office providing valuation and appraisal services. In addition to these services, Chris is the editor for Ascend's regular update, Inside Track on Values, as well as specialising in the Full Flight Simulator and aircrew training market.      


Michael Lapson                                                        

Michael Lapson final.jpgSenior Analyst

Michael joined Ascend as a Senior Analyst in the consulting practice, where he is investigating the linkage between aircraft valuation and air freight transportation demand.

Prior to Ascend, Michael held a position with Moffat & Nichol as a Lead Transportation Analyst providing strategic advisement  to shipping ports and financial due diligence for transactions involving freight transportation infrastructure.

Michael draws upon his education in Transportation Engineering and Industrial Engineering.                                                                                        



Daniel Hall                                                               

Daniel Hall.1200 v2.jpg

Senior Analyst, ASA-Certified Appraiser (AM)

Daniel is a Certified Appraiser with the American Society of Appraisers (ASA) - AM (Accredited Member) and is based in Ascend Flightglobal's New York office as of April 2014. He has a comprehensive knowledge of the Commercial and Business Aviation sectors.

With Ascend, he has a variety of involvements including analysis of aircraft market values, market insight & commentary, business development, and consultancy projects. Daniel frequently works on Commercial & Business Aircraft Market Values and Appraisals, to both an ISTAT and ASA-compliant standard. 

The Business Aviation sector is an area that Daniel has had a particular focus on. Having worked for a corporate jet management company, he has built upon this experience and specialised in the sector, actively tracking Market Values and financing for over 50 Business Jet type families / 100 variants. His client interaction ranges with those representing banks, financiers, investors, airlines, lessors, and includes industry conference speaking.

Daniel joined Ascend's London, UK office in 2010, following completion of a BSc Air Transport Management degree from Loughborough University, UK, which included a final year dissertation on the Sustainability of Business Jet Aviation.



Henk Ombelet

Project Manager/Consultant

Henk joined Ascend in March 2012 from parent company Flightglobal, continuing a career of more than twenty years spent in aviation and aerospace.

He started his career as an analyst in the engineering department at Dutch manufacturer Fokker Aircraft, before moving to London to join the International Air Transport Association. At IATA he was responsible for traffic and financial data collections, edited World Air Transport Statistics, and conducted many studies, forecasts and consultancy projects in the aviation sector.

He subsequently joined Air Transport Intelligence (also part of Flightglobal), as the data manager working closely with key industry partners in traffic data, schedules and fleet data. He was responsible for product development, and set up the route development conference Network Latin America with Airline Business.

Henk holds an MSc in Business Administration and Engineering from Twente University of Technology in the Netherlands. He speaks fluent Dutch and Spanish.




Ben Chapman

Aviation Analyst

Ben joined the Ascend Consultancy Team in 2013 following three years with the Flightglobal Ascend Sales Team in London.

He is focused primarily on helicopter and fixed-wing aircraft valuations, however he also supports the global business development teams and provides market analysis and insight to Ascend’s clients.

Whilst on the Sales team he worked closely with the Consultancy team to deliver large projects in valuations, market analysis and risk advisory. Prior to joining Ascend, Ben was an intern at Bloomberg Equity Research in London following graduating with a degree in Economics and electives in Corporate Finance from the Australian National University.




Gary Sze

Project Manager

Gary joined Flightglobal Ascend in 2012 as a Project Manager based in Hong Kong. He is responsible for the overall project management of advisory projects for clients in the region. He has experience in the air transport and freight forwarding industries.

Prior to joining Ascend, Gary was the regional marketing manager for United Parcel Services leading new product development initiatives and business planning in the Asia pacific region. His other areas of aviation expertise also include traffic market analysis and revenue management when he worked for the Airport Authority of Hong Kong and Cathay Pacific Airways respectively.

Gary holds a Bachelor degree in Transportation and Logistics from the University of British Columbia, Canada and a Master degree in Global Logistics Management from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. He is a Chartered Member of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport. 



Michael Hui

Aviation Analyst

Based in Hong Kong. Michael specialises in airports and airlines business development. Michael joined in 2014, having previously worked for aviation consulting and airlines in Australia.

Past experience in providing valuable insights and strategic analysis for the aviation and airline community. In particular worked on airline route developments, airport revenue optimization and policy analysis projects for the Asia-Pacific region.

Michael holds a Bachelor of Aviation (Management) at University of New South Wales and a Master of Marketing at University of Technology, Sydney.



Thomas Charbonneau Kaplan

Aviation Analyst

Thomas joined Ascend’s London office, but has since relocated to Hong Kong to better serve clients in Asia. He focuses on the commercial aviation market and aircraft asset values.

Thomas began his career in the aviation industry in 2005 working for a components manufacturer supplying the major players in Montreal’s aerospace industry including Bombardier and Pratt & Whitney Canada.  He has since lived in New York, where he studied business and finance, as well as in Dubai, where he worked as a management consultant for A.T. Kearney.

Thomas holds a mechanical engineering degree from McGill University and an MBA from Columbia Business School.



Dennis Lau

Aviation Analyst

Dennis first joined Ascend in August 2004 as Data Analyst in the UK office, focusing on the research of airline operator data. He later joined the marketing team as Research Editor, and was responsible for analysing data for company publications and preparing marketing material. Dennis also worked on consultancy projects for Asia clients, as well as writing articles for well-known industry publications.

Since joining the Ascend Asia office in February 2012, Dennis has been primarily responsible for researching aircraft fleets data in Greater China and Japan. In addition, he provides data support to key clients and industry knowledge training within the company.

Dennis holds a MEng in Aerospace Engineering from Bristol University and an MSc in Aviation Management from the University of Southampton.


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