New Chairman of Pacific Aerospace Corporation
10 November 2005
Exporting and investment leader appointed Chairman of Pacific Aerospace Corporation
One of New Zealand’s leading entrepreneurs and exporters has been appointed chairman of the country’s largest aircraft manufacturer, Pacific Aerospace Corporation (PAC).
Neville Jordan, who also chairs Endeavour Capital, is assisting in day-to-day operations of the Hamilton-based aircraft maker and also managing European sales.
Jordan says PAC is now starting to see the results of major restructuring in mid September aimed at reducing costs and improving sales and production.
The world’s newest topdresser, an agricultural version of PAC’s latest robust utility aircraft, the 750 XL, had performed very successfully since its delivery earlier this month. Another had been sold for delivery in February to the same client, the Taumarunui Aerial Co-operative. The 750 XL has been designed for skydiving, commuting and freight roles, and the topdresser will also double as a fire bomber.
Jordan says another 750 XL left New Zealand on Sunday (6 November) and would arrive in South Africa this Friday (11 November) where it would be tested for use in aid work by a non-government organisation hired by the United Nations.
Another aircraft had been fitted out to do geophysical work in North Africa. It would leave on its delivery flight in about 10 days. It would be based at Timbuktu (the famous central Mali trading centre, established in the 11th century) and used for minerals exploration.
Two 750 XLs also took part in a major US air show in Florida at the weekend.
Jordan is a graduate engineer from Canterbury University. He initially worked in civil aviation and IBM, followed by several years in Europe as Vice President for a multinational company. In 1975 he founded MAS Technology Ltd, pioneering in microwave telecommunications, and successfully floated it on the NASDAQ stock exchange in 1997.
As chairman of Endeavour Capital, a company operating with a licence from the government's Venture Investment Fund, he has several investments in New Zealand-based science and technology companies, including co-founding the drug discovery company, Protemix, based at Auckland University.
He is a Distinguished Fellow of the Institute of Professional Engineers NZ and was awarded the United Kingdom IEE Kirby Medal for “outstanding eminence and distinction in advanced technology”. He served six years on the board of the Crown Research Institute, AgResearch, and three years each on the boards of the Foundation of Research Science & Technology as well as the Prime Minister’s Growth and Innovation Advisory Board.
In 1997 he received the Governor General's Supreme award for Exporting and was invested in 1999 as a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit. He was inducted into the New Zealand Hi Tech Hall of Fame in 2004.