On the clock: How a local company is bringing the next Chiefs to Kansas City

Published: Apr. 26, 2023 at 8:04 AM CDT
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (KCTV) - The Kansas City Chiefs will be on the clock before we know it and one local private plane company is preparing for where they need to pick those players up.

The company, Airshare, flies 25,000 hours a year, with 300 employees, and 150 full-time pilots out of the Charles Wheeler Downtown Airport. The partnership with the Chiefs started nearly a decade ago as KCTV previously reported back in early February.

They are on stand-by starting Thursday night about flying in those new Chiefs picks to get them here in a timely manner.

Airshare President and CEO John Owen said you’d think it’s a time to relax following the Super Bowl run and parade, but it’s not as they are then thrown into action again with the start of the offseason and free agent visits and signings.

“We do anything from the last minute, late night calls for the free agent signings to the combines to really anything they want,” Owen said. “We’re really a part of their business and it’s great for us because it’s nice to have a hometown team that we support and we can kind of see the fruits of our labor working with the Chiefs and creating Super Bowl champions multiple years.”

Chiefs executives use the service for the NFL Combine in Indianapolis as they can continue working as a team while up in the sky on the way and on the way back.

Airshare was showcased on the Chiefs’ YouTube videos called “Work To Win” showing them bringing in free agents like Juju Smith-Schuster and Justin Reid last season.

Fans at Union Station Thursday night will await NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell’s announcement of who the next Chief will be, and so will the crews at Airshare.

“There’s obviously a lot of new people that are getting drafted in town but, you know, in the second or third round we’re basically on standby,” said Owen. “Just waiting for them to call us to figure out where we need to go to bring these people in, so it’s kind of fun because some of these people’s first experience of Kansas City is Airshare and flying in on an Airshare plane.”

The Chiefs are penciled in right now with 10 picks in this year’s draft so a whole lot of planning is in store for the Airshare team here. We’ll see who Kansas City picks Thursday night, with general manager Brett Veach and Co. currently slated to pick at No. 31.