In the spring of 1993, with the purchase of one single De-Havilland DHC-5 Buffalo aircraft, Emmanuel Anassis incorporated an organization which, 20 years later, would be destined to revolutionize the humanitarian aid industry across the African continent.

Today, we are honored to retrace the steps of DAC Aviation’s 20-year journey filled with triumphs, innovation and the underlying desire to make a difference!


1993

 
Trident Enterprises is established in Lokichogio operating one de Havilland DHC-5 Buffalo.
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The organization acquires its first de Havilland DHC-5 Buffalo from the Ages Group. This single aircraft would be the launch pad for DAC's humanitarian flight operations throughout Africa.
 

 

The organization secures its first contract with UNICEF for a 30-day mandate requiring the full time service of DAC’s only aircraft.
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1994

 
On March 10th, DAC Aviation takes to the skies for UNICEF for the first time to deliver 8.6 tonnes of UNIMIX to starving children in the remote village of Waat (former South Sudan).
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DAC staff performs a low and over on runway 27 in Lokichoggio with their Buffalo tail number 5Y-TAJ.

1995

 

DAC Aviation Internationale Ltée is federally incorporated in Canada allowing the company to develop key relationships with OEMs including Volvo, Field Aviation, General Electric Aircraft Engines and Bombardier. Ultimately, the incorporation of DAC would allow the organization to implement western aviation "best practices" to more effectively and efficiently support humanitarian operations in Africa.


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1999

 

DAC opens its first MRO facility in LaSalle, Quebec in order to support hot section inspections on the Buffalo’s CT64-4 engines. The facility was established at a time when other MRO organizations were not able to provide quality engine maintenance, while DAC believed that it could offer a better service at a competitive price. Since 1999, the organization has done jus that, growing to become a GE recognized Center of Excellence for the CT64/-3/-4/-P4D.

 
DAC and the Indonesian Navy strike a commercial agreement to provide Buffalo Aircraft for the purpose of humanitarian support, in exchange for supporting the Indonesian Buffalo fleet.
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Pictured to the left are the first two engines to be inducted into the DAC Center of Excellence for maintenance, repair, and overhaul.

2000

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Fourth Buffalo is acquired by DAC.

2001

 
DAC becomes a Transport Canada approved AMO (31-00) for the CT64/-3/-4/-P4D line of engines.
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2002

 

 DAC is now the largest civil operator of Buffalo aircraft in the world. In addition, DAC possesses full engine overhaul capabilities in support of its fleet of Buffalo aircraft.

2003


A turning point in DAC's history!


The organization introduces its first Dash 8 aircraft in June of 2003, revolutionizing the humanitarian aid industry. Over the next decade, DAC would follow suit with more Dash 8 aircraft, eventually becoming the only operator in the world to actively use the full range of Dash 8 products including the 100, 200, 300, and 400 series aircraft.


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With the organization's MRO capabilities continuously expanding, DAC quickly realized that the size of their facility would ultimately restrict both growth and capability expansion. In February of 2003, the company moved into a newly renovated, state-of-the-art facility that would allow DAC to continue supporting its ever expanding operations.

2004

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 DAC continues to expand its Buffalo fleet to 7 aircraft.

2005

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DAC Introduces two Dash 8 300 long-range aircraft increasing capacity to 50 passengers, allowing costumers to benefit from new mission profile capabilities.

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DAC is among the first to introduce aircraft satellite tracking for humanitrian flights.

2006

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DAC establishes remote operations utilizing the Dash 8 300 in Kabul, Afghanistan in the heart of winter.
  
DAC was honoured to have been awarded a long-term contract by the European Commission Humanitarian Aid Organization for their ECHO Flight program. This contract would further expand the scope and breadth of DAC's operations in Africa.
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2007

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With DAC’s African fleet expanding yearly, it was a natural progression for the company to introduce in-house aircraft maintenance capabilities. To support this growing need, DAC Aviation acquires CMC Aviation, a Nairobi based AMO located in the heart of Wilson airport.

2008


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In August, National Geographic releases a 1-hour documentary entitled "Congo Bush Pilots" documenting the challenges faced by pilots flying in the DRC. DAC Aviation as well as it's Chairman, Emmanuel Anassis are among those featured.
 
DAC introduces the newest generation C208B Grand Caravan G1000, the first of it's kind in Africa. The Garmin G1000's enhanced capabilities offer a greater level of safety and reliability in low visibility, and challenging mountainous environments.
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DAC Aviation Internationale Ltée in Montreal signs a long-term agreement with Honeywell Aerospace for the repair and overhaul of over 90 part numbers belonging to the Department of National Defense (DND) in Canada. Over $2 million in facility upgrades is invested in support of the project.

2009

 
 
DAC enters the jet service market with the introduction of its first CL65 Canadair Regional Jet.
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DAC becomes the 6th company in Canada to be awarded ISO 9001 and AS9110 certification.

DAC is the first operator in east Africa to voluntarily introduce ICAO international standards of SMS to their operations.

2010

 

Disaster strikes Haiti and millions are left in need of aid. With DAC's aircraft on the other side of the world, the organization is unable to provide flight support, however DAC Aviation contributes to the relief efforts in the form of financial aid for those affected by the earthquake.

2011

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DAC purchases its first Dash-8 200 series in February. The acquisition of the Dash-8 200 series signified further aircraft diversification and increased capabilities for the organization.
  
DAC implements Pentagon 2000 SQL, an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system, capable of incorporating the worldwide activities of the organization into one, remotely accessible, management software. 
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DAC Aviation Internationale Ltée’s Montreal headquarters is awarded a long-term contract by the Canadian Department of National Defense (DND) for the repair and overhaul of their T64-3 engines.
 
 
Only a year after the first iPad is released, DAC introduces the Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) at the GASC, a first for the humanitarian aid industry.
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DAC is the first Kenyan operator to complete the KCAA ICAO recertification process.

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DAC Introduces the first ever ECHO online reservation system.


2012

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DAC begins the development of maintenance capabilities for the PW120 series engine. The end of 2012 is marked with a Transport Canada approval of this newly developed capability as well as the release of DAC's first overhauled PW121 engine.
 
 
DAC announced the purchase of 6 Grand Caravan EX models from Cessna Aircraft Company in December for delivery in 2013.
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2013


In February, DAC announced the purchase of its first Dash-8 Q400 aircraft from Bombardier. The introduction of the Q400 is part of an ongoing effort to continuously modernize and grow the existing DAC fleet.


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In May, DAC Aviaiton takes delivery of the first of 6 new Cessna Grand Caravan EX aircraft. The new Cessna Grand Caravan EX aircraft bring with them the newest aviation innovations, consistent with DAC Aviation's commitment to continuously being on the cutting edge of technology while providing the safest and most reliable air transportation services available across the globe.

 
DAC Aviation diversifies its market presence by securing two long-term contracts with the DPKO (Department of Peace Keeping Operations). Based in Nairobi (Kenya) and Abidjan(Ivory Coast), the operations support logistical resupply and passenger transportation.
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Basic Aviation Risk Standards (BARS) accreditation.
 
DAC Aviation's CL-600-2B19 (CRJ 200LR) is contracted by United Nations World Food Programme to be based in Nairobi, Kenya in support of personnel transportation missions throughout Somalia.
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DAC builds on its existing in-flight tracking system with DAC, Dragon™. This next generation device allows DAC partners to access secured crew, passenger, and cargo manifests in real-time, along with costumer defined key performance indicators. A mobile application is also introduced to provide instantaneous access to key flight details.
 
DAC enhances the onboard experience through the use of streaming in-flight media straight to passenger laptops and mobile devices.
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DAC revolutionizes online ticketing and check-in services, remotely in the field. All system features are designed to support user through any mobile device.

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Enhancing the costumer experience, DAC has recently completed construction of a dedicated interim ECHO flight lounge. ECHO passengers now have a private space where they may enjoy a cup of coffee, surf the internet, and check-in for their flight.
 
DAC Launches a full-scale Social Media campaign. Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn help the organization mold its corporate image, as well as give costumers and partners a public forum to interact and engage with DAC. Access to social media tools provide partners with increased transparency throughout our operations and allow DAC to manage service and passenger trends in real-time.
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DAC Aviation is among one of the first operations to implement a company-wide standardized Learning Management System. The online-based company training program assures that all DAC staff have access to vital training information with the newest processes being electronically delivered to their mobile devices. The system assures our staff is properly equipped to make the best decisions 24/7, 365 days a year.

2014


 
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DAC unveils plans to build a state-of-the-art hangar and MRO facility in Nairobi. DAC's new hangar will be the Center of Excellence for training DAC staff. The building will also act as a FBO for existing DAC operations. The project has been designed as a "green" structure, tapping into solar power and using recycled materials to minimize its impact on the environment.
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DAC Aviation is set to launch a premium jet service in 2014. The initiative, branded DAC Jet, will cater to executives and business professionals looking for expeditions, effortless and private travel throughout North America and the African continent. State-of-the-art Cessna business jet products will be the aircraft of choice offering the latest in safety, performance and technology.