As a result of the pandemic, the demand for private and business aircraft grew so fast that some customers looking for in-demand aircraft might skip the pre-buy inspection to save time or money. That can be problematic if customers later discover maintenance issues that they overlooked by skipping the pre-buy. With that in mind, a new company called Crew Chiefs, based in White Plains, New York, was established to offer buyers an expedited option.
Launched this week, Crew Chiefs provides on-site aircraft maintenance professionals worldwide to oversee pre-buy or other inspections on behalf of the buyer, the seller, or other clients. In a statement, Chris Buchholz, Crew Chiefs founder and CEO, said his company’s software provides customized solutions for customers to streamline the pre-buy inspection process.
“Crew Chiefs’ customized software for inspection oversight results in a more disciplined approach to ensure the inspections are performed correctly while enhancing transparency and improving productivity,” Buchholz said.
The company aims to create a more consistent standard for overseeing pre-buy and other aircraft inspections.
Crew Chiefs can provide an on-site technical representative to help customers perform a myriad of tasks, including:
- overseeing pre-buy inspections for the client,
- overseeing completions at the OEM before new aircraft deliveries,
- overseeing the refurbishment of business aircraft,
- providing asset condition and end-of-lease surveys for financial institutions,
- providing entry-into-service on-board technicians along the sale and acquisition process.
Buchholz is a former investment banker at Goldman Sachs who has enjoyed a colorful aviation career, serving as a president at Universal Weather in its Hong Kong division. He was also a board member for the International Business Aviation Council, which designed the International Standard for Business Aircraft Operations (IS-BAO) used across flight departments. More recently, Buchholz was a vice-president at Icon Aircraft.
He is joined by co-founders Mark Thibault, a serial entrepreneur and industry veteran who will serve as the chief technology officer, and Warren Curry, a former Icon vice president, who will be the chief operating officer at Crew Chiefs.
“Thanks to Mark’s decades of remarkable OEM, operator, and MRO technical leadership and Warren’s decades of outstanding aviation and OEM sales and marketing execution leadership, we are strongly positioned to lead our team of OEM-trained seasoned crew chiefs who are based around the world,” Buchholz said.