Helicopters Magazine

Panalpina Heliship celebrates 25 years, appoints Hecht to lead future

August 16, 2018  By Wings Staff

Panalpina, the Swiss logistics and freight forwarding company, is celebrating 25 years of its Heliship service based in Vancouver, BC. The Vancouver operation also introduced Ryan Hecht as its new head of service beginning this September when Juerg Boschung, the current leader of Heliship, plans to retire.{gallery}7706{/gallery}

Boschung has been with Panalpina since 1993 when, in October of that year, the company transported three Bell 205 helicopters from Abbotsford, BC, to Rancagua, Chile. This created the new specialized Panalpina service of Heliship, which has since shipped thousands of helicopters around the world.

“When I joined Panalpina in the fall of 1993, the number of helicopter shipments was low, but they gained considerable attention due to their complexity, profitability and a growing market need,” said Boschung. “As the volumes slowly ramped up, I was able to hire a team with experience in project forwarding, and train them on the nuances of shipping helicopters.”

The company explains it has a number of helicopter operations that have been working with Panalpina for more than 20 years, leveraging its unique customer-specific solutions. In addition to private buyers, Heliship has sent helicopters to perform what it describes as remarkable jobs, such as delivering supplies to western military bases across Afghanistan; supporting fire-fighting operations in Australia, Southern Europe and South America; UN aid missions in Africa; and transporting people and supplies to and from offshore oil sites.

“Over the last few years, we have developed additional Heliship competence centres in the UK and Australia that have helped grow our business considerably and become a market leader in helicopter shipping,” said Boschung, who then spoke to his pending retirement. “It has been my great honour to lead this team to create a market-leading service that was non-existent 25 years ago. But as I prepare to retire, I’m thrilled to announce that Ryan Hecht will be my successor and assume leadership of Heliship.”


Hecht began his career in freight forwarding in 1994 immediately after finishing college. He joined Panalpina in 2008 and became part of the Heliship team in 2009, fulfilling what he describes as a lifelong passion for aviation.

“I am excited about what’s to come for Heliship,” said Hecht. “We are expanding the team with a sales function to boost sales in the U.S. and support the Panalpina network with operational expertise. With a market of 60,000 registered helicopters globally, Heliship’s launch into the next decade has a highly promising outlook.”


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