About us

The Company. Our core Values. Our Beliefs.

Our main base

Our main helicopter base at Mackay houses our administration offices, operations control, crew report, maintenance planning, maintenance workshops and inventory control. All major maintenance is undertaken at this facility.

We’ve got the tools

Bell 206, Bell 222, Bell 430, and EC135. We operate both single and multi-engine aircraft suitable for a range of missions. We manage an in-house comprehensive maintenance division.

Competitive Pricing

We support the local employment of pilots, LAME-qualified engineers and administration staff to minimise Fly in Fly out (FIFO) costs. We have adopted a preferred local supplier policy.

Investors in People

We have in place a comprehensive check and training system to ensure our pilots regularly update their qualifications. Our engineers are factory trained.

Over 20 Years Experience

No helicopter company in Australia has the level of experience of Mackay Helicopters in Marine Pilot Transfer services.

Great Support

All of our pilots have significant experience on Marine Pilot Transfer operations. Our engineers have many years experience on the aircraft types that we operate.

Mackay Helicopters highly experienced staff include Contract Managers, Operations Management, Administration, Specialist Pilots, Maintenance Engineers, Maintenance Planners, and Inventory Managers, to cater for our valued clients.

We provide a personalised service with a dedicated, highly motivated team who originate from within the aviation industry. All staff possess extensive aviation expertise and are ready to provide customised helicopter solutions.

Chief Executive Officer

Ian Vanderbeek has over 35 years of safety and quality experience and 22 years as a Director, Managing Director or CEO of aviation companies as well as being a licenced CASA and EASA Airline Transport Pilot.  Prior to becoming CEO of Aviator Group in 2013, Ian worked in regional, corporate and airline operations in Australia, Asia and Europe.

Group Safety Manager

Piumi Holland has over 10 years’ safety experience gained with international and regional operations including approval as a Lead Auditor and an ATSB Human factors Safety Investigator. Piumi has experience in developing and managing Safety Management Systems (SMS). Piumi also holds a Cert IV in Training and Assessment and has had extensive experience in authoring and producing aviation operations manuals.

Chief Pilot

Captain Geoff Liehm has over 25 years’ helicopter experience. Geoff has over 5,000 hours on helicopters and has successfully completed more than 3,000 ship deck landings. He holds an ATPL Helicopter licence and Multi-Engine Instrument Rating for helicopters. Geoff is responsible for all daily and ongoing pilot operations and maintaining the safety and compliance of all flight operations.

Mackay Helicopters Key Personnel

Head of Check & Training

Captain Mike Hayes is a CASA Approved Testing Officer and Flight Examiner for helicopter licences and ratings, including Type Rating Testing for Eurocopter EC135 and AS355 helicopters. Mike is an experienced Grade 1 Flight Instructor. He has over 6,000 hours flying experience, with more than 2,000 hours’ helicopter instructing time. He is a CASA-approved trainer for aviation Threat and Error Management programmes.

Head of Maintenance

Hans Kunzi has over 35 years of helicopter engineering experience gained in remote stand alone locations. Hans has over 10 years of experience in the Eurocopter EC135 and AS350 series helicopters. In addition to offshore and Helicopter Marine Pilot Transfers experience he also has experience in Quality Assurance Management and Maintenance Control.

The Mackay Helicopters team has been providing a range of solution focused aviation services to corporate, private and government entities for over 25 years. With safety and customer service at the forefront of our operations we provide a wide range of cost-effective aviation solutions utilising a variety of helicopter types to provide the right aircraft to suit our clients’ needs and budget.

We thrive on repeat business and we are relentless in our endeavour to protect our reputation for high quality Helicopter Marine Pilot Transfers services, friendly and non-adversarial relationships across the board, and offering high level proactive contract development, project delivery and safe on-time operations.