Arizona-based MD Helicopters has acquired UK-based police and ambulance helicopter operator Specialist Aviation Services (SAS) from Canada's Bombardier.

"We're very pleased with the SAS acquisition," says Henk Schaeken, chairman and chief executive officer of MDHI. "It strengthens our position in the important UK market."

What's more, "their local service and support, and especially their modification and completion capabilities, will be very valuable to us," Schaeken adds.

Police Aviation Services (PAS) and Medical Aviation Services (MAS) are wholly-owned subsidiaries of SAS. Together, they employ 114 people and are the leading providers of air support to UK police forces and to air ambulances.

Mike Hayle, managing director of the SAS group, will lead the new company, which is considered a sister company to MDHI. PAS provides aircraft, pilots and maintenance services to various constabularies in the UK. MAS provides similar services to air medical providers.

SAS, based at Gloucestershire Airport, operates a fleet of 18 helicopters and nine fixed-wing aircraft. PAS and MAS operate from 14 other locations in the UK and two in the West Indies.

Source: Flight Daily News