Consolidation of air taxi carriers in the Alaska commercial fleet has fewer aircraft flying longer hours daily, weekly, and monthly. Transitioning from the smaller Cessna 207 Part 135, air taxi companies are relying on the Cessna 208B Caravan. Carrying up to eleven people and able to haul up to 1,800 pounds, the useful load capacity makes the newer Cessna 208B EX Gran Caravan the new "workhorse of Alaska."
Northland Aviation Services
Northland Aviation Services Inc., a Fairbanks-based company, sells the Caravan in Alaska. Northland started as an aviation parts and service company and withstood the economic downturn of the 1980s. "I was working for Northland when the partnership was dissolving and they set me up to buy them out," Jon Mclntyre remembers. "I was twenty-three years old at the time." The Alaska economy crashed right after the transition in ownership. "It was pretty ugly for several years," he says.
Jon and Karla Mclntyre have owned Northland since 1986; Karla is vice president of aircraft sales and Jon oversees the service and parts and other aspects of the business.
Northland expanded and moved the business to a new hangar in 1998. Their new parts division was established in 2000. The company has been a Textron dealer since 2012, which allows them to sell single engine Cessna aircraft, as well as parts and service for Cessna and various other bush aircraft.
The Mclntyres have eight employees at the company's headquarters and warehouse located on the east ramp at Fairbanks International Airport. Currently Northland sells aircraft throughout the state of Alaska and to-date has sold more than twenty-five new Cessna aircraft as a Cessna authorized sales representative for all Cessna propeller aircraft
Northland recently purchased Tamarack Air Service's inventory and building. "We ran out of space so we purchased the building and that houses our parts inventory," says Mclntyre.
"My mantra is that we are a solution center and treat people the way that you would want to be treated with good customer service. We have people come in that don't know what a part is named or don't have a clue what it is... we help anyone we can." He continues, "We are trying to help the industry; some operations have millions of dollars in parts, and a lot of capital tied up in inventory. It's only logical that using us would free up that capital,"
Mclntyre credits the people in Alaska as his support and success. "We've met a lot of really good people who...