Mr. Townes is a well-known aerospace/defense entrepreneur with 34 years of civilian industrial experience building large scale aerospace services operations in both the DoD and commercial services sectors. He is also a member of the South Carolina Aerospace Task Force, an initiative by the SC Secretary of Commerce and Governor for expanding the aerospace/defense industry in the state, with 7 CEO’s and 3 flag officers.
He was CEO and founder of Ranger International Services Group for 4 years prior to the Berger Group buyout in 2012. That business, which tripled in size prior to the buyout, is now called Louis Berger Services Inc., employs approximately 1,000 professionals and operates in several aerospace/defense technical services sectors. Steve subsequently led the add-on acquisition of Hawthorne Services, Inc. As CEO and founder of Ranger Aerospace for 17 years, Townes led Ranger’s efforts since inception in early 1997 in exemplary ventures such as the successful acquisition and doubled growth of Aircraft Service International Group (“ASIG”) to over 4,200 employees, and the tripling of Keystone Helicopter to over $135 Million.
Ranger Aerospace, a private equity management company, earned a national reputation as an aggressive builder of profitable, accelerated-growth businesses. With ASIG, Townes and the Ranger team transformed the business to become ranked best in class worldwide, as it expanded to 56 airports and 30 fuel depots in North America and Europe. With Keystone, Townes and the Ranger team drove growth efforts that resulted in the tripling of revenues and near-quadrupling of profits in 5 years, and near-quintupling of enterprise value. Each large Ranger company followed a quality-first, highly principled growth strategy, and was eventually sold to major strategic buyers; each then continued expanding on the Ranger growth initiatives.
The newest venture, Louis Berger Services, is now the internal consolidation platform for all of Berger Group’s operations & maintenance units, with the goal of building a $500 Million enterprise by the year 2020.
Prior to starting Ranger Aerospace in March 1997, he held senior roles in aerospace/defense companies such as LTV Aerospace & Defense, Stevens Aviation, and Sabreliner Corp. Townes is a West Point graduate, earned an M.B.A. at Long Island University, and is a PMD alumnus of Harvard Business School. He is experienced in Congressional liaison, public relations/corporate communications, FAA and NTSB testimony, has been a featured speaker at national-level industry and financial symposia, and in various industry and financial press articles. Ranger’s past exploits earned “Deal of the Year” and “Deal of the Decade awards by M&A Magazine, and yielded superior returns to Private Equity shareholders. He earned the Eisenhower Award upon graduation from West Point, and served in the Army’s Rangers and with Colombia’s Lanceros as a young officer before commencing his distinguished Aerospace/Defense and Private Equity career. With operations in numerous time zones around the world, Townes has extensive international business experience in Latin America, Middle East, Europe, and elsewhere.