Costa Mesa, CA. March 4, 2013 - Don Nichols, founder of the 40-year-old company, Heli-Mart, Inc., a helicopter parts distribution supplier and MD Helicopter Authorized Service Center, has retired in advance of this year’s Heli-Expo convention in Las Vegas. Nichols had operated the company with Ed Brown, who assumed full ownership and presidency of the service company on January 1 of this year.
Brown also has relinquished to Nichols his personal ownership stake in Phoenix Heliparts, a full-service helicopter MRO in Mesa, Arizona. With this divestiture, the two companies have ended their period of joint ownership.
Nichols has been a visionary in the helicopter support business for most of his working life, and is looking forward to his new role as ‘customer ambassador’ for Phoenix Heliparts.
Helimart’s former president, Don Nichols, said, “I can honestly say I’ve thoroughly enjoyed this business – keeping helicopter operators where they are happiest – in the air, wherever in the world they are.
“We rate AOG service above all, and our team gets tested every day.”
Heli-Mart specializes in MD 500 support, and holds an MD 500 service center approval from the factory.
Nichols added, “We are proud of our international reputation for MD 500s support, as well as for Bell and Eurocopter. I am confident we have left Heli-Mart in good hands with Ed Brown.”
Heli-Mart president, Ed Brown, said, “We couldn’t have asked for a better leader than Don. Together we carved out a market niche and grew it consistently over the years. This year we are celebrating Heli-Mart’s 40th year in business, so I guess Don and the rest of us have been doing something right.”
In his part-time role as consultant to Phoenix Heliparts, Nichols will advise on a number of market strategies and opportunities, including growing the company’s presence in refurbishing special-use helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft.
Nichols added, “I will enjoy some time off, yet want to keep in touch with our customers. It’s tough to quit something you’ve been doing well, and happily, for 50 years.”
Heli-Mart acquires $10 million parts inventory, Phoenix Heliparts moves to expanded facility, and California Aero Compnents increases availability of parts to become major contributor.
It has appointed Conrad Moreno as quality assurance manager, and Marcus Landry as manager of business development.
Official handover to Team C&H, of Jacksonville, FL, will take place at 1.30 p.m. Sunday, March 6 in a brief ceremony at Phoenix’s exhibit (Booth 1006) at Heli-Expo.
Phoenix Heliparts is capable of complete airframe and systems rejuvenation, structural modification, avionics, paint, interiors and certification and is an AS9110 certified MRO company.