MRO Management

MAAS Aviation celebrates 40 years of aircraft painting

MAAS Aviation celebrates 40 years of aircraft painting

Aircraft painting and exterior coatings company, MAAS Aviation, is celebrating its 40th anniversary of business this year.

During this time, MAAS Aviation has painted thousands of aircraft, witnessed immense change, and grown to become a multi-million Euro business.

Jan van Engelen, chief executive of MAAS Aviation, said: “Over the past four decades MAAS has grown from simple beginnings to become one of the leading providers of aircraft painting services worldwide.

“This success is testament to the hard work, dedication and passion of the excellent people that have supported the business throughout our history and continue to do so today. This great achievement is collective and celebrated by the company as a whole.”

During the past 40 years, the company has built facilities in Europe and the US, established longstanding relationships with airlines, leasing companies, MROs and OEMs across the globe, and since 2019, has partnered with Egeria, the Amsterdam headquartered private equity firm.

Established in 1983

In 1983, Darragh Hall and Harry Ryan set-up Expressair Aviation, the parent company of MAAS Aviation.

Offering outsourced aircraft painting services across Europe, the Hall and Ryan established their fledgling business by travelling to their customers’ locations to repaint entire fleets of aircraft.

MAAS Aviation states that this entrepreneurial spirit and customer centric focus continues to be at the core of its business culture today.


In 1986, the company established its first fixed aircraft painting facility at Shannon Airport, Ireland.

This was quickly followed in 1988 by an expansion to the Netherlands, when MAAS Aviation opened its first purpose-built aircraft painting and refurbishment hangar at Maastricht Aachen.

MAAS Aviation has since established purpose-built paint shops in Germany, the USA and most recently in Kaunas, Lithuania, to support the growing requirements of its long-term customers, Airbus and Ryanair.

Jan van Engelen, chief executive of MAAS Aviation since March 2023, said: “We currently operate painting facilities in five locations across four countries in Europe and North America, which serve our OEM and MRO customers.

“All of our facilities employ the latest technologies to support us in achieving the highest standards of quality, whilst also minimising the environmental impacts of our activities.

“The key attractions to joining MAAS were the vast growth potential of the business and the team of passionate professionals focused on quality, sustainability, and customer experience, who have built the strong brand and reputation the company holds today.”

Wide range of customers

MAAS Aviation has an impressive list of customers, having worked with manufacturers, passenger and cargo airlines, leasing companies, MROs, private owner-operators and military customers over its history.

On the OEM side, MAAS Aviation has been an Airbus Tier 1 supplier since 2011 and operates eight Airbus OEM qualified paint shops on two continents.

Speaking about the company’s longstanding partnership with Ryanair, van Engelen said: “MAAS’ relationship with Ryanair spans more than four decades, dating back to when the airline was founded in the 1980s.

It is our shared focus on quality, attention to detail and the highest delivery standards that has led to our continuing positive partnership throughout this time.”

In 2020, MAAS Aviation commenced a new multi-year painting programme for all of easyJet’s fleet. Van Engelen said: “We are proud to name easyJet as a long-term customer and have established a strong and transparent partnership with their team.

“Our streamlined induction process is delivering aircraft finished to the highest OEM quality standards at the optimum TATs this leading operator demands.”

Future success

Van Engelen said: “Having successfully weathered the storm of the global pandemic, during which time we further strengthened our strategic partnerships, there is now great potential to enhance MAAS’ market position.

“Our number one priority is to ensure we consistently deliver the high-quality painting standards we are known for, working in partnership with our customers to optimise their operations.”

“In tandem with this, we are exploring a number of strategic initiatives as we continue to evolve the business. These include targeted acquisition and partnership opportunities with aircraft painting and MRO service companies, as well as scenarios for geographical expansion.

“We are also focused on developing our existing business offering in the widebody and the business aviation/VIP market sectors, and consolidating our existing core activities through the provision of complementary MRO services.

“I look forward with enthusiasm and optimism as we advance on our path of business growth and innovation.”

READ MORE NEWS: MAAS Aviation’s first all-female team completes aircraft painting project for International Women’s Day

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