Dubai Aerospace Enterprise’s ambition to become a global giant with businesses in several expanding industry sectors has effectively ended with the sale of its only overseas subsidiary, StandardAero, one of the biggest and oldest names in the maintenance, repair and overhaul of business jets and their engines.

The acquisition for an undisclosed sum of the Scottsdale, Arizona-headquartered group by New York-based Veritas Capital leaves DAE with just one division, commercial aircraft leasing firm DAE Capital.

When it was founded in 2006, the Dubai group planned to launch or acquire businesses in spheres as diverse as pilot training, component manufacturing, MRO and airport management and development.

DAE acquired StandardAero in 2007 from Carlyle Group. StandardAero is a factory approved service centre for Bombardier Globals, Challengers and Learjets, as well as Dassault Falcons and Embraer Legacys. Its Dallas-based Associated Air Center specialises in Airbus Corporate Jets and Boeing Business Jets completions. It also has approvals for General Electric CF34, Rolls-Royce AE3007 and Honeywell TFE731 engines.

StandardAero, which also has a military MRO business, was founded in 1911. Veritas managing partner Ramzi Musallam says his firm will “help drive [StandardAero’s] next phase of growth, including expanding the company’s presence globally”.

When DAE – which is majority owned by concerns controlled by the Dubai government – was seriously affected by the emirate’s financial crisis in 2010, StandardAero remained a strong performer and executives at the time repeatedly insisted that DAE had no plans to raise cash by selling the business.

DAE had launched a pilot training and education arm called DAE University, but it was axed after little over a year. DAE also owned a stake in Swiss-based SR Technics.

DAE managing director Khalifa AlDaboos, says the Dubai group, which owns 61 airliners in its leasing business, will now “redeploy capital and refocus its efforts on building a world-class aerospace footprint anchored in Dubai” and “aggressively acquire aircraft assets to expand its aircraft leasing portfolio”.

Source: Flight International