New Operation to Land at Walnut Ridge Airport

November 13, 2003 - Posted at 6:51 p.m. CDT

WALNUT RIDGE, AR - Residents around Lawrence County may notice an unusual sight in the skies on Thursday (Nov. 20), as a Boeing 737 airliner sets down at the Walnut Ridge Regional Airport.  The landing will herald the start of a new operation at the airport.

Universal Asset Management, headquartered in Memphis, recently signed a lease with the airport commission to occupy a new facility that is nearing completion at the airport.  UAM supplies hardware for jet aircraft around the world.

"Our business model centers around providing a lower cost alternative to new aircraft components in a timely manner.  In many cases airlines can't get new aircraft parts to support timing or cost needs, and that's where we come in," said CEO Steve Manley.

The Walnut Ridge facility will basically be used to land large aircraft, disassemble them, and ship the parts to UAM customers.

15 to twenty workers will eventually be employed at the Walnut Ridge facility, although as many as 100 part-time workers will be hired as needed.

The first aircraft, a B737-200, is scheduled to land in Walnut Ridge between 1 and 3 p.m. Thursday.