Lisbon, Portugal-based Sevenair Academy has selected a highly experienced airline Captain and ab initio instructor, Captain Salvador Costa Pereira, to join the board of directors as Chief Operating Officer and Head of Training for its rapidly expanding flight school. The appointment is effective 1 March 2023.

“Captain Pereira has been in commercial aviation operations and training for more than 20 years, including 13,000 hours flying Airbus A320, A330/340 and A380 types for TAP, Emirates and easyJet,” said Carlos Amaro, CEO of Sevenair Group. “He also has the flight training credentials to lead our Academy, which is already one of the largest flight schools in Europe and poised to get bigger.”

“After two decades of operational experience, I now have the opportunity to return to ab initio to contribute my knowledge, skills and attitudes to the younger generation,” Captain Pereira said. “There is currently a gap between pilot demand and supply, which we can help fill with growth, but we must always do so with the highest standards and quality.” 

Last September, Sevenair, the oldest aviation academy in Portugal, acquired the in-country pilot training assets from L3Harris, growing Sevenair to three training locations with over 30,000 m2 of dedicated facilities, 43 aircraft, five simulators, and a 145 double-room boarding campus at Ponte de Sor Airport.

The fleet includes Cessna 150/152s, Diamond Aircraft DA40s and DA42s, Piper PA-28-181 Archer IIs, and Tecnam P2006Ts and P2010s.

Sevenair Academy offers training for the EASA Integrated Airline Transport Pilot License for Aeroplanes (ATPL-A), as well as a Modular ‘frozen’ ATPL(A) program.

Captain Pereira first developed a passion for flying at about 5 years old when his oldest brother joined the air force. “I never wanted to be anything else,” he said. Two other brothers are also pilots. Salvador earned his commercial pilot license (CPL) when he was 20.

Working three jobs to pay for his modular flight training at various schools, he was also an instructor before hiring into TAP Portugal, the national airline, flying A320 and A330/340 aircraft as a First Officer, then becoming a Captain after six years. Pereira would go on to fly the A380 for Emirates (“The best machine I’ve ever flown in my life.”), A319/320/321 types for easyJet, and A320 business aircraft for MasterJet/Luxaviation, where he was also Safety Manager. 

Pereira has also consulted with CAE on development of a Multi-Pilot License (MPL) program, and is a strong advocate for MPL and competency-based training.

He earned a Master’s degree in Air Transport Operations from ISEC – Instituto Superior de Educação e Ciências.