Enstrom Helicopter Corporation under new ownership

Charles Surack, founder of Sweetwater Sound and owner of Surack Enterprises, has become the new...
Charles Surack, founder of Sweetwater Sound and owner of Surack Enterprises, has become the new owner of Enstrom Helicopter Corporation.(Surack)
Published: May. 16, 2022 at 10:38 AM EDT
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MENOMINEE, Mich. (WLUC) - The Enstrom Helicopter Corporation was purchased by Surack Enterprises founder, Chuck Surack. The new owner made the announcement on Friday, May 13.

Surack says he plans to rebuild the Enstrom brand into one of the leading American-made helicopter manufacturers as it once was.

Surack is widely known for founding Sweetwater Sound, the largest online retailer of music instruments and professional audio equipment, growing it to a $1.5 billion business out of the back of his Volkswagen bus. His entrepreneurial spirit, business acumen, and enthusiasm for aviation are just a few reasons why under his ownership the future is bright for Enstrom.

In a letter to the Enstrom leadership team, Surack shared his appreciation to the employees for their devotion and dedication over the years and particularly the last few difficult months.

Matt Francour, President & CEO of Enstrom said, “Earlier this year it looked as if MidTex Aviation would step in and buy Enstrom, but when they had unexpected problems securing the funding, Chuck was able to step in and save the company, which ended a lot of sleepless nights here for us in Michigan.”

With the help of Carson LLP and Warner Norcross + Judd LLP, the trustee’s attorney, the purchase was able to proceed quickly.

Surack’s history with Enstrom dates to 2008 when he learned to fly helicopters and before even obtaining his pilot’s license, he purchased a brand new Enstrom 480B.

“I am excited to have purchased this outstanding company that manufactures helicopters here in the United States and employs workers right here in the Midwest,” Surack said.

The Enstrom Helicopter Corporation joins the Surack Enterprises portfolio of aviation-related businesses including Sweet Aviation, which provides charter flights, training, and rental for fixed-wing aircraft, Sweet Helicopters which does the same for rotorcraft and is the official helicopter services provider of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and Aviation Specialty Insurance, which insures the aviation industry including corporations, light aircraft, flight schools, drones & UAVs, and more.

Enstrom has maintained a reputation for safety, value and performance, Surack Enterprises said. The immediate goal will be to continue supporting pilots who already own an Enstrom helicopter by providing parts and support. The company is excited to start building helicopters again and is planning to improve and update the Enstrom helicopter fleet.

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