04 September 2012

New Management at Great Barrier Airlines

There has been a change in management at GBA, with the retirement of Great Barrier Airlines’ former CEO Gerard Rea. Gerard’s shares have been purchased by NZ Aerial Mapping Ltd, an aerial survey company dating back to 1936. For the past ten years, NZ Aerial Mapping Ltd has been owned by Mark Roberts and his long standing friend, Mr Mohammed Hanno. Mark first became involved with GBA in 1995, and was General Manager until 2000, when he began to concentrate his efforts toward NZ Aerial Mapping Ltd. Over this period, Mark retained an approximate 38% shareholding in Great Barrier Airlines. With the purchase of Gerard’s shares GBA is now owned by Mark and NZAM which in tum is owned by Mark and Mohammed. NZAM is based in Hawkes Bay and has a staff of 38 comprising pilots, navigators, engineers, photogrammetrists, sales and administrative staff. The company operates around the world with a fleet of six aircraft... 
With regard to GBA, Mark has taken the opportunity to boost the management structure so we will see new Quality Assurance Manager, Greg Matten, and new Flight Training Manager, Mark Huxford, amongst others, but the old familiar faces remain as well, and some NZAM faces from time to time. There are some obvious synergies between GBA and NZAM with opportunities for common pilot training and cross utilisation of aircraft. Both companies have Part 145 Certified Maintenance hangars and the additional resources now available can only benefit both companies.
Source : Barrier Bulletin, 18 April 2012


  1. They are also looking into the Bongo replacement, Current options (as heard from a couple of friends who are GBA pilots) are Caravans (likely contender and makes economic sense, the Viking twin otter (will believe it til I see it as it carries 4 more pax but burning twice the fuel and there is no need for a REAL STOL aircraft on their routes) and of course, the new GA18 Nomad. This is a distinct possibility, being a proven GBA aircraft with newer more efficient engines and a comparably high cruise speed... Along with being a twin which I am sure they will like. However, 18 seats seems a bit steep for some of the flights, possibly a trilander replacement? Then maybe GA10s as Islander replacement?

  2. First Caravan due to arrive in October.