Avionics News May 2012 - 47
Andy Davis is Trig Avionics’ chief executive officer.
workstations, followed by a transfer back to ICL in Scotland. Eventually, he was laid off from that position and shares the sentiment of many who find themselves in a similar situation. “It was one of the best things that could have happened,” he said. That’s because he and some colleagues started a data networking hardware and software company called Spider Systems. “That was the early 1980s when local area networks were just starting,” he said. “It became a successful business, and we sold it after 12 years.” Along the way, a friend bought Davis an introductory flight lesson as a gift. “I was immediately hooked,” he said. “I went on to earn my private pilot’s license, multiengine and instrument ratings.” He bought an airplane – a 1960s-era Cessna 172 – an airplane he has owned for 25 years. “I’ve been flying now for the best part of 30 years and have about 4,000 hours,” he said. When Spider Systems was sold, “I went in two different directions. I became a part-time consultant and a part-time commercial pilot,” Davis said. He earned his commercial
license and flew business turboprops and Cessna Citations for a charter company. It’s a time in his life that Davis remembers fondly. “I was a bit of a businessman, and a pilot too,” he said. “It was quite a nice lifestyle.” But soon, Davis’s entrepreneurial instincts were calling him again. “By 2003, I was getting itchy fingers to getting back to running a business,” he said. And, it’s at this point that his life experiences coalesced to an ideal solution. “I came to the idea that I could combine my engineering background with flying,” he said. “Avionics seemed like an opportunity to bring those two together. “There have been quite a lot of changes in the past 10 years – mandates for new equipment, VHF radio changes, ADS-B in the U.S. – and I saw an opportunity for a startup. The avionics business is fairly conservative, with wellestablished companies, so it takes something new, such as a government mandate or a technology shift like glass panels to be successful with a new company.” That was the founding philosophy for the EdinburghContinued on following page