Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes
This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.
This is Fred Ball for Zions Bank, speaking on business.
Friends Nadim AbuHaidar and Greg Petersen had been traveling to Park City and the Heber Valley since 1988. They liked the recreational opportunities the area afforded, and getting here was easy. As high-ranking U.S. Navy Fighter Pilots, traveling to Utah was just a matter of flying their own planes, which they did, often making the Heber Airport their destination stop.
With each visit, the two pilots grew fond of the airport. They liked its location, size and services, and they saw its potential for business as the ideal spot to offer flight training, scenic flights and airplane sales.
Then the opportunity came in 2000. Nadim purchased the airport's fixed base operations from Dave McCoy, who had managed them for several years. Shortly after, Nadim and Greg organized Wasatch Aero Services to offer the services they had envisioned.
They began with just two planes and less than a handful of students. But now, within only two years, their enthusiasm and investments have helped the business grow by 70 percent. Wasatch Aero Services now owns 11 brand new planes, has added three new buildings, including an FAA-certified maintenance shop and is a Cessna Pilot Center, currently training 52 students. Students can earn either two- or four-year degrees in professional piloting from Utah Valley State College or Westminster. The flight school also offers unusual attitude and aerobatic training for pilots who want to push their skills. In one NBC segment presented during the Olympics, Nadim and Greg were filmed conducting aerial stunts in two of their planes.
For people interested in simply seeing the views of the Wasatch Mountains and the surrounding valleys, Wasatch Aero provides scenic flights, as well. And Nadim and Greg will even charter tours, which include lodging and of course the flight.
The company also sells and rents planes and can serve as a broker for clients looking for a particular kind of aircraft.
Well, there's no doubt, Nadim and Greg have their work cut out for them, which is why Wasatch Aero Services at the Heber Airport has quickly taken off.
For Zions Bank, I'm Fred Ball. I'm speaking on business.