Professional Aviation Services was founded by Christine Garbett in 1980 to operate exclusively in the field of turbo prop and jet aircraft sales with the objective of providing a more competitive marketplace in aviation in South Africa and to open up the “cartel” mentality that prevailed in the industry at the time.   The company has specialised in aircraft sales and the operation of passenger and cargo aircraft. 

Christine Garbett is an instrument rated commercial pilot whose flying career includes several single engine solo ferry flights between Europe and South Africa and numerous flights with tourists into the Okavango Delta region for locally based tour operators.

Rob Garbett joined Professional Aviation Services in 1983, his broader business knowledge and creative background, brought further and faster growth to the company.  Prior to joining Professional Aviation, Rob was the Managing Director and major shareholder in “Advertising Deadlines and Freight (Pty) Ltd”, a domestic courier company that he founded in 1980.  The company was sold to its major competitor in 1982.   Rob is currently the president of BAASA (The Business Aviation Association of South Africa).   

Christine and Rob are both Fellows of the Institute of Directors in Southern Africa. Rob currently serves on the Council of the Johannesburg Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

Gerhard van Zyl is the General Manager (operations, sales  and business development).   Gerhard holds a B-com degree (major law), a private pilot’s licence and is one of only a few South Africans who has appeared in the Guinness Record Book for Golf.   He has extensive international experience which included specific focus on logistics and supply chain management.   He too is a member of the IOD.  Gerhard’s prime responsibilities are operations, sales and client liaison.      

In addition to its other activities Professional Aviation Services have operated, managed, owned and leased many jet and turbo prop aircraft including King Airs, Citations, Learjets, Gulfstreams and Turbine DC 3 aircraft (DC3’s which have had extensive, three million US Dollar conversions, including a re-engine to modern Pratt & Whitney turbo jet engines) in various countries in Africa, for commercial and humanitarian aid projects.

The company has achieved a large number of highlights including being the first South African sales company to exhibit at the Farnborough Air Show (1992) where the company also exhibited a Turbine DC 3.  

In May 1998 Professional Aviation achieved another first by negotiating the loan of a piece of the moon from NASA which was placed on exhibition in South Africa.   The director, and management, of the company were privileged and honoured to have given President Nelson Mandela a private viewing of the moon rock.

In August 2010 a sister company, Professional Risk & Asset Management (Pty) Ltd, concluded a joint venture with Mechem (Pty) Ltd, a subsidiary of Denel, in the field of the use of dog teams employed in the making safe of air cargo.  

The company is proud to have served its customers and would like to express thanks to them for building our company, and our reputation, into the best, if not yet the largest, aviation sales, charter and management company in Africa. 

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