Bris­tow He­li­copters gets heav­ier

Pilot - - ROTORHEADS -

Bris­tow He­li­copters is to ac­quire US heavy-lift spe­cial­ist Columbia He­li­copters at a cost of $560 mil­lion. Aurora, Ore­gon-based Columbia was founded in 1957 and op­er­ates a fleet of 21 twin-ro­tor Ver­tol 107s and Boe­ing CH-234/CH-47DS, pro­vid­ing heavy lift ser­vices, pri­mar­ily to the US mil­i­tary and govern­ment cus­tomers.

The ac­qui­si­tion “will pro­vide both com­pa­nies with im­me­di­ate op­er­a­tional and fi­nan­cial ben­e­fits,” soon-to-re­tire Bris­tow Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer Jonathan Baliff said. “With this trans­for­ma­tive $560 mil­lion dol­lar trans­ac­tion we’re cre­at­ing the lead­ing global di­ver­si­fied in­dus­trial avi­a­tion ser­vice com­pany... vir­tu­ally defin­ing what that means. These are two highly com­ple­men­tary busi­nesses with a shared fo­cus on world-class safety, re­li­a­bil­ity, client ser­vice and so­lu­tions.”

Columbia will con­tinue to op­er­ate as a sep­a­rate sub­sidiary of Bris­tow, with its own board and op­er­a­tional and man­age­ment struc­ture, and its he­li­copters will re­tain their Columbia colour schemes, but Bris­tow ex­pects to open up new mar­kets for them through its Air Op­er­a­tor Cer­tifi­cates and fa­cil­i­ties in more than ten coun­tries world­wide, Baliff said. “[We can] pre-po­si­tion them ac­tively to work­ing in fire­fight­ing or other govern­ment work, or in on­shore oil and gas. We’ve got the fa­cil­i­ties and the AOCS to be able to do that.”

Columbia He­li­copters’ rôles in­clude fire­fight­ing

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