Tell us about…
The moment you decided to establish ACS
After working in the US during the 80s, my wife and I decided to move our family back to the UK. On our return I took an opportunity outside the aviation industry for the first time in my career. However, almost as soon as we returned the country entered into recession and before we knew it, we were struggling to pay the mortgage. So I decided to go back to what I knew, opened my book of contacts in the aviation industry and founded ACS in the basement of our house.
Your best idea for ACS
Globalisation. In the early days of ACS I was flying around the world looking for opportunities to do business. As a small business at the time, I had to seek out new markets and find solutions in extreme situations to win business from my already well-established competitors, and that led me to places ranging from war-torn Somalia to the former Soviet Union post-perestroika. I realised then that local knowledge gave such an advantage, and therefore, despite the myth that because aircraft travel around the world it doesn’t matter where you are based as a business, we needed to open businesses around the world. I opened our first international office in Moscow in 1995 and we haven’t looked back since.
Your three essentials for a productive day at the office
What gives you a sense of achievement
Positive feedback from customers telling us we came up with a solution where our competitors were unable to; seeing our involvement in international events, from arranging aircraft for roadshows to delivering relief to the Philippines, and knowing that our expertise has made a difference; and watching our businesses around the world grow.
Your favourite pastimes outside of work