Rushlift Ltd., a national supplier of equipment leasing and maintenance services, has acquired the ground support equipment (GSE) maintenance facility at London Heathrow (LHR) from American Airlines (AA).
The deal secures several jobs at the facility and marks an acceleration of the company’s expansion in to the market, having already secured contracts to supply and maintain GSE equipment for two major airlines.
Rushlift GSE will operate out of the existing LHR base at Elmdon Road, close to British Airways’ Vanguard House, and will continue to support AA, as well as other key customers, for whom it currently maintains on ramp equipment.
Rushlift supplies and maintains airside equipment for a number of air cargo handlers such as BA World Cargo.
“We are very excited by this acquisition and the synergies we see in bringing GSE capabilities within our operation,” said managing director, Graham Farquhar. “We share a passion for engineering expertise and attention to detail, but can also bring new technology and new thinking to a business that already has a wealth of knowledge and experience, and is eager to expand.”
The directors have ambitious growth plans for Rushlift GSE, including developing a rental fleet business, upgraded parts support and online fleet management, and is already looking to recruit additional engineering staff, expecting to double the entire workforce within three years.
Operations manager, Kevin Robins, who ran the facility on behalf of AA, will stay on and continue to be a vital member of the management team.
Said Kevin: “We are delighted to be joining Rushlift and becoming part of a new team. It is a great vote of confidence in our business as well as an exciting new development for us. We warmed immediately to the Rushlift team and in an industry where long-term relationships and trust are incredibly important, we are absolutely thrilled to be become part of a highly respected and successful organisation.”
Kevin is a GSE industry veteran having started work in the 1960s at Rolls-Royce, before moving to BOAC, the fore-runner to British Airways, in 1972. He eventually moved to AA in 1995. Having previously held the position of GSE manager for British Airways, where he oversaw 6 workshops and over 300 staff, Kevin has an unmatched knowledge of the industry and was a major attraction in Rushlift taking on the business.
Said Graham: “As a very successful service-based business, we feel there are many outstanding examples of best practice we can bring to help this new venture grow and develop, but it is absolutely true that we are a relative newcomer. That’s where Kevin’s experience and knowledge will be very influential. He is a highly respected character and one we are delighted to have on board.”
As a leading provider of innovative mechanical and materials handling solutions, operating from six locations throughout the UK and with 150 highly skilled engineers, Rushlift maintains over 8,000 items of varied equipment. In 2011 it signed a 10 year deal worth £100m to manage the materials handling fleet for Jewson owner, Saint-Gobain.
Through its ground-breaking online Fleet Management System, the company has developed into the leading independent supplier in its sector, allowing customers to access their fleet records, log breakdowns and manage their account in real time.
The company’s ‘applications engineering’ approach to problem-solving ensures customers receive not only world leading equipment, but original solutions to their complex operational needs.