skip to main content

Training firms Top Aces, Blue Air join forces

Top Aces' fleet of adversary aircraft includes the Lockheed Martin F-16. (Kyler Noe, professional photographer)

Canada's Top Aces, which provides adversary aircraft to train fighter jet pilots in air-to-air combat, has expanded its portfolio by acquiring US-based Blue Air Training Corporation, which conducts close air support (CAS) training for ground troops.

Blue Air will become part of Top Aces Corporation (TAC), a US subsidiary of Top Aces, the buyer said on 6 April. Blue Air and TAC will remain based in Las Vegas, Nevada, and Mesa, Arizona, respectively, and will continue to operate independently under the same names.

“Through this partnership, we look forward to deepening our relationship with our customers and demonstrating the value of a one-stop solution,” TAC president Russ Quinn said.

Blue Air was previously owned by its founders, Gretchen Barlow and James “Chef” Barlow. They will continue in their roles as chief administrative officer and chief executive officer, respectively.

Following the acquisition, Top Aces will have a total of 350 to 400 employees. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Blue Air trains joint terminal attack controllers (JTACs) to direct CAS aircraft. Its customers include the US Air Force and US Special Operations Command. Its aircraft fleet includes the OV-10 Bronco twin-engine turboprop, the BAC-167 Strikemaster jet, the Bell 206 helicopter, and the A-90 Raider, IAR-823 Brasov, and PC-9 Pilatus single-engine turboprops.

Looking to read the full article?

Gain unlimited access to Janes news and more...