NEW IBERIA, La. (KLFY) — Aviation Exteriors Louisiana (AvEx), which specializes in painting commercial aircrafts, will be investing $2.5 million into an aircraft maintenance hangar for the new services at Acadiana Regional Airport.

Aviation Exteriors was founded in 1990 as a company focusing on aircraft painting. The company grew from commercial airline painting to include military aircrafts and corporate jets. The most recent decision to expand into maintenance repair, and overhaul services came in light of new CEO Jerry Hernandez.

Multiple Louisiana leaders see the need for this expansion as well as the benefits it will bring to Iberia Parish.

“This project represents a significant advancement of Iberia Parish’s continuing efforts to diversify its economy,” Gov. John Bel Edwards said. “Acadiana Regional Airport is a vital asset for the area, and as Iberia Parish grows its aviation industry, it attracts more quality jobs for the parish’s skilled workforce.”

The expansion is expected to create 100 new job openings, while retaining 83 existing jobs.

“This is a great opportunity to create new jobs at an existing company in Iberia Parish, along with bringing additional business opportunities to current businesses in our parish,” says Iberia Parish President Larry Richard.

Airport Authority Chairman Patrick Norris, Iberia Industrial Development Foundation president and CEO Mike Tarantino, and Troy Wayman, president and CEO of One Acadiana are also excited about the prospect of a new niche business being added to the Iberia parish economy.

AvEx’s CEO Jerry Hernandez says the company’s culture paired with the support of local agencies and the state are “a recipe for success” for this expansion.