Columbia Helicopters

Blicksilver PR is handling private equity firm AE Industrial Partners' deal to acquire Oregon’s Columbia Helicopters, makers of heavy-lift Chinook helicopters used in defense, firefighting and mining.

Columbia thought it had a $560M deal with Bristow Group last year, but that transaction fell apart and the Texas company ultimately filed for bankruptcy.

Based in Boca Raton, AE invests in aerospace, defense, power generation and specialty industrial markets.

Columbia, which has about $300M in annual revenues, is owned by the family of founder Wes Lematta, who died in 2009.

AE says current Columbia majority owner Nancy Lemata will keep a “significant ownership stake” in the company and CEO Stave Bandy will remain at the helm.

Blicksilver’s Jennifer Hurson and Kristin Celauro represent AE.

Michigan’s Lambert owns New York-based Blicksilver.