Brian McKeown – Founder
Airbase, originally founded as Steelbase Aero-Marine in Montreal, Quebec, traces its origins back to 1962 with Company founder, Brian McKeown. Over the years, the Company became a provider of higher volume and value added services such as outsourced machine shop services, its central focus until the late 1980’s, and the repair of onboard cargo containers (ULD’s), its main business until the early 1990’s.
Between 1990 and 1995, the Company expanded its geographic presence in Canada from Montreal to include stations in Toronto and Vancouver with satellite stations in Calgary and Halifax. In 1995, JPMorgan Partners (formerly Chemical Venture Partners) acquired 50% of the Company from Brian McKeown with the intention of growing the business organically and through select acquisitions. From 1995 to 2005, Airbase grew 20 fold expanding its operations through the US and the UK however it, like many other companies, became a victim of the downturn in the industry with subsequent airline bankruptcies and had to “reorganize” in May 2006. Through this reorganization, the original management team took back control of the Canadian corporation.
Our service offerings
Repair of cabin avionics including on-board passenger seats, and other cabin furnishings: chillers, coffee makers, harnesses, ovens, cargo pallets, nets and straps, as well as engineering and certification services.
Over the years, the current management team has been successful in leveraging Airbase’s relationships with its customers thereby transforming itself into a full service firm with our focus niche on low-tech equipment found in the interior and cargo hold of commercial aircraft and railway companies. The Company also provides warranty management services, logistical handling of replacement parts and equipment as well as the ability to provide asset management services such as equipment tracking programs and advice on new equipment purchases and obsolete equipment disposition
Today, Airbase is one of Canada’s largest independent providers of maintenance and repair services for onboard equipment to commercial airlines and railways. Our focus is to continue growing along three axis: Customers, Locations, and Commodities & Service Offerings.