LHT sells assets of Tulsa firm to Yankee Pacific

 - February 2, 2007, 10:37 AM

Yankee Pacific, created four years ago to “invest in aviation-related businesses and provide business development services to an aviation company client base,” recently expanded its mid-America presence by buying the Tulsa, Okla.-based Lufthansa Technik Completion Engineering (LTCE) assets of its German partner.

The joint venture with Lufthansa Technik was launched in November 2002, with Yankee Pacific of Rye, N.Y., holding a 49-percent share.

The years following the formation of LTCE saw a dwindling market for the widebody interior completion work in which Lufthansa Technik specializes, and the Hamburg-based company agreed to sell its share of the engineering assets to Yankee Pacific Executive Aircraft Completions.

Yankee Pacific has renamed its new acquisition Executive Aircraft Completions. As such, said Yankee Pacific founder and president Ken Goldsmith, the engineering acquisition “will continue its vigorous pursuit of interior completion business and opportunities developed while in partnership with Lufthansa Technik.”

Executive Aircraft Completions has retained the same facilities adjacent to Tulsa International Airport, as well as “all technical, administrative and management” staff.

Goldsmith said he has no plans to open a physical plant for interior completion and refurbishment work, but prefers to occupy a niche position, offering design, engineering and certification services to independent completion centers that typically hire contractors for such work. The company will also provide a total interior completion management service for aircraft owners and buyers.

“We see Executive Aircraft Completions as a means for completion centers to expand or contract quickly, depending on market demand,” said Goldsmith.

Continuing as executives and shareholders in the company are Goldsmith as president, Rick Richardson as v-p of engineering and Wayne Etling as v-p of operations.

Goldsmith described the acquisition of Lufthansa Technik Completion Engineering as “very amicable,” and said the new company expects to continue working with former parent company Lufthansa Technik Completion Center in Hamburg.

As LTCE and in its new guise as Executive Aircraft Completions, the company has provided extensive engineering support toward completion of two Boeing Business Jets at the Hamburg facility. Yankee Pacific investments include:

  • Air Travel Video Technologies of Santa Barbara, Calif., which produces video software that allows aircraft passengers to familiarize themselves with an airport layout before arrival.
  • Eclipse Aviation of Albuquerque, N.M., manufacturer of the Eclipse 500 very light jet.
  • Premier Air Center of East Alton, Ill., which has partnered with Honeywell to provide a major engine upgrade for the Falcon 50.
  • SimAuthor of Boulder, Colo., producing flight visualization and analysis software.
  • Goldsmith is particularly enthusiastic about the Falcon upgrade program. The performance enhancement involves removal of the original Honeywell TFE731-3-1C engines, which the engine manufacturer will modify to the more efficient TFE731-4-1C model.

The three-engine upgrade will give the Dassault-built business jet increased range, better time to climb, increased hot-and-high performance, higher cruise thrust and increased maintenance intervals.

Flight tests are expected to begin in the second quarter next year, pending placement of initial customer orders for at least 10 aircraft conversions. An STC is expected in the early fourth quarter next year.