Garrett Aviation Services Acquired by the Carlyle Group

TEMPE, Ariz. – The Carlyle Group has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Garrett Aviation Services from General Electric Company. Garrett Aviation Services, headquartered in Tempe, Ariz., is one of the world’s leading providers of comprehensive maintenance services for corporate aviation.

Garrett Aviation Services provides a wide-range of general aviation services, including engine and airframe maintenance, repair and overhaul services, avionics installations and interior refurbishments. Garrett employs more than 1,000 people in nine facilities located throughout the United States.

Carlyle intends to combine Garrett with Piedmont Hawthorne, the second largest fixed base operator with 32 facilities. Piedmont Hawthorne provides refueling, maintenance, aircraft sales and aircraft charter and management services to corporate and individual aircraft operators. Piedmont Hawthorne also owns Associated Air Center, a leading heavy jet aircraft interior completions and modifications center.

The transaction is expected to close during the third quarter of 2004. Frank Klaus, president of Garrett Aviation Services, will lead the joint company as Chief Executive Officer under the new management group.

“We are excited about what the future holds for Garrett,” Klaus said. “With the support of our new shareholder, we will continue to provide the same level of quality service Garrett, Piedmont Hawthorne and Associated Air Center are known for and now can focus on expanding our presence in the market. We believe that as an independent entity and in combination with Piedmont Hawthorne and Associated Air Center we will be able to better serve the needs of the general aviation market and the evolving needs of our customers.”

Piedmont Hawthorne, Associated Air Center and Garrett all have a long-standing history in the general aviation industry with more than 170 years of experience and have built a reputation of technical expertise and customer service.

“The combination of Garrett, Piedmont Hawthorne and Associated Air will create a leading general aviation aftermarket service provider, offering a more comprehensive range of services to better serve the needs of its broad customer base,” said Adam Palmer, managing director of The Carlyle Group.

“Garrett’s strong heritage in the industry, reputation for quality, technical expertise and extensive customer relationships have created one of the preeminent MRO service providers in the general aviation services market,” Palmer said. “We believe the combination with Piedmont Hawthorne creates a true fullservice general aviation aftermarket company with a national presence to meet the expanding needs of its customers. The combination pairs some of the most recognized names in the general aviation industry and will be well positioned to capitalize on the future growth in business aviation. We look forward to working with the existing management to enhance the value of the company.”

The Carlyle Group is a global private equity firm with more than $18.3 billion under management. Carlyle has been the leading private equity investor in the aerospace and defense industries for more than a decade.

About The Carlyle Group
The Carlyle Group ( is the leading private equity investor in the aerospace and defense industry having completed 29 transactions representing over $7 billion in purchase price. Recent transactions in the sector include Avio SpA, Vought Aircraft Industries, Aviall, Aerostructures, Firth Rixson, United Defense Industries and U.S. Marine Repair.

About Garrett Aviation Services
Garrett Aviation Services ( is a provider of a broad range of aftermarket services for corporate aircraft. Garrett offers a full range of services including engine and auxiliary power unit maintenance, repair and overhaul, airframe maintenance, avionics installations, interior refurbishments, engine retrofits and fixed base operation services. Garrett employs 1,000 people at nine locations: Long Island, N.Y.; Augusta, GA; Columbus, OH; Springfield, IL; Little Rock, AK; Houston, TX; Omaha, NE.; Tempe, AZ.; Los Angeles, CA.

About Piedmont Hawthorne
Piedmont Hawthorne ( is one of the oldest continuously operating general aviation companies in the world, with a rich history in both the general aviation and airline industry. Piedmont Hawthorne provides fueling and ground support services at any of their 30 FBO facilities, corporate maintenance/modifications, aircraft sales, and 135 charter operations. Piedmont Hawthorne employs more then 1, 500 people at 32 facilities throughout the United Stats and Canada.

About Associated Air Center
Associated Air Center ( is a subsidiary of Piedmont Hawthorne Holdings, Inc., located in Dallas, Texas with over 56 years of experience and over 450 employees providing large aircraft completions. Services include design, engineering, manufacturing, installation and certification. Associated Air Center incorporates luxury interiors with state of the art multi-media equipment along with functional aircraft accessories. Offering heavy maintenance, inspections, overhauls, AD’s, service bulletins, CPCP, ageing aircraft and structural modifications and avionics upgrades.