HEICO Corporation helps jets get airborne. Its Flight Support Group, consisting of HEICO Aerospace and its subsidiaries, makes FAA-approved replacement parts for jet engines that can be substituted for original parts, including airfoils, bearings, and fuel pump gears. Flight Support also repairs, overhauls, and distributes jet engine parts, as well as avionics and instruments for commercial air carriers. HEICO's second segment, Electronic Technologies Group, makes a variety of electronic equipment for the aerospace/defense, electronic, medical, and telecommunications industries.
HEICO's business is comprised of two operating segments, the Flight Support Group (FSG; about 65% of net sales) and the Electronic Technologies Group (ETG; 35%).
FSG competes with industry leading OEMs and to a lesser extent with smaller, independent parts distributors. Historically, the three main jet engine OEMs, General Electric, Pratt & Whitney, and Rolls Royce, have been the source of substantially all jet engine replacement parts for their own jet engines. HEICO is seeking to capture some of that market by adding new products at a rate of 300 to 500 manufacturer-approved parts (also called PMAs) per year.
HEICO has its operations and facilities in China, India, Singapore, Canada, France, Korea, Laos, the Netherlands, the UK, and the US. The company markets its products and services in approximately 100 countries, with the US counting for more than 65% of its net sales.
Sales and Marketing
HEICO sells its products through in-house personnel and independent manufacturers’ representatives. It targets a broad customer base consisting of domestic and foreign commercial and cargo airlines, repair and overhaul facilities, other aftermarket suppliers of aircraft engine and airframe materials, OEMs, domestic and foreign military units, electronic manufacturing services companies, US and foreign governments, manufacturers for the defense industry as well as medical, telecommunications, scientific, and industrial companies. Net sales to its five largest customers account for around 20% of net sales each year.
HEICO has achieved unprecedented growth over the years, with revenues jumping 16% from $1.19 billion in 2015 to peak at a record-setting $1.38 billion in 2016. Profits also surged 17% from $134 million in 2015 to $156 million in 2016, another company milestone. In 2016 cash flow from operating activities increased due to a $37 million decrease in working capital, a $23 million increase in net income from consolidated operations, and a $12 million increase in depreciation and amortization expense (a non-cash item).
The historic growth for 2016 was fueled by increases in both of its segments. FSG jumped by 8% due to organic growth as well as additional net sales from a previous acquisition. The organic growth reflected new product offerings and favorable market conditions resulting in net sales within the aftermarket replacement parts and repair and overhaul services product lines.
ETG revenue soared by 31% due to additional net sales from a previous acquisition as well as organic growth of approximately 4%. The organic growth reflected an increase in demand for certain space and aerospace products.
Mergers and Acquisitions
HEICO uses acquisitions to build out a diverse product and service portfolio in order to reduce exposure to cyclical swings in any single market. Its current set of offerings have broad-range applications in aircraft, missiles, ships, surveillance systems, computer and networking devices, telecom equipment, surgical equipment, CT scanners, and X-ray systems.
In 2016 the company's ETG division acquired Arizona-based Robertson Fuel Systems for $255 million. Robertson has expertise in the design and production of mission-extending, crashworthy, and ballistically self-sealing auxiliary fuel systems for military rotorcraft. The acquisition will enhance the company’s fuel systems product portfolio.
In 2015, the company’s FSG division purchased Astroseal Products Manufacturing Corp. Astroseal makes expanded foil mesh that is integrated into composite aerospace structures for lightning strike protection in fixed and rotary wing aircraft. The deal expanded the group's offerings of aerospace composite products.