ENID, Okla. — Free trade zone
Dan Ohnesorge, airport manager, said Mickey Stowers is considering taking advantage of the foreign free trade zone that has been approved but has yet to be activated.
In free trade zones, businesses can import items into the free trade zone and delay paying duty on the merchandise.
“We have gone through the process of getting it approved,” said Ohnesorge. “That was about a two-year process. All we need is a business owner who wants to take advantage of the opportunity. It hasn’t happened yet, but Mickey Stowers is looking at it.”
ASIC got its start in 1978 in the back of an old bank building in Pond Creek as Stowers Aircraft Corp. The company moved to Medford, Blackwell-Tonkawa Airport, back to Pond Creek and then, in 1984, to Berryville, Ark. The company began calling Enid home in 1992.
When the firm moved to Enid the company shifted its focus almost exclusively to the Caravan.
“The reason is we can be proficient at doing the same thing over and over,” Mickey said. “There’s no learning curve, you already know it.”
ASIC employees travel the world retrieving damaged Caravans, from Laos, to Alaska, to India, to Nigeria, to Fiji.
“They wreck an airplane, they call Cessna, Cessna says to call us,” said Kay.
ASIC has a contract to do all metal work for FedEx, which maintains a fleet of 250 Caravans. They also work for insurance adjusters and buy wrecked Caravans, which they repair and sell.
“We had one that flew into a mountain in Alaska,” Mickey said. “It’s flying back up there.”
Presently ASIC is working on Caravans from Chile, Peru and the U.S. Damaged aircraft normally are disassembled on site, crated up and shipped back to Enid, but occasionally they can be patched up and flown here.
The company also does modifications and enhancements of Caravans under supplemental type certificates granted by the Federal Aviation Administration.
“We’ve gotten three approved STCs,” said Kay.
Mickey and Kay married in 2000, and she became co-owner of the business. He handles sales and production management, while she handles finances and human resources.
“Everybody says, ‘You guys work together and then you’re home together, doesn’t that just drive you crazy,’” Kay said. “When we’re at work I hardly see him. He’s in his office doing his stuff, and I’m in mine.”