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AIRINC History

The Founding and Early Years

AIRINC (Associates for International Research, Inc.), was established in 1954 as a research organization with a mission to help American business and diplomatic personnel work more effectively in an international context. Founding partners Arthur Nelson, Jim Boyce, and Max Milliken believed that expatriates who received advance training regarding the economy and culture of the host country would enjoy more cross-cultural success and greater productivity than those who did not receive this type of preparation.

AIRINC conducted its first expatriate compensation project in 1958, when Mobil Oil turned to AIRINC for help in resolving a pay dispute involving expatriates working in Indonesia. At the time, Mobil was using U.S. State Department cost-of-living indices designed for diplomats working overseas. After conducting onsite research, AIRINC identified the problem. Unlike diplomats, the civilian Mobil expatriates could not shop at the “PX” (government subsidized) stores located on military bases. Therefore, it was more expensive in Indonesia for Mobil expatriates than for diplomats, and compensation adjustments were made. Mobil then asked AIRINC to apply our methodology to their other facilities in Europe and Latin America. Mobil became the first AIRINC client for which a worldwide system for compensating expatriates was developed and maintained.

The Mobil project was the catalyst for AIRINC’s creation of a new, scientific, objective approach to determining expatriate or over-base compensation. From researching expatriate spending patterns, AIRINC developed a consumption model that accounted for family size and income level. This model contained more than 400 expense variables in categories like food, clothing, and housing.

By 1970 AIRINC had acquired 25 client accounts and would henceforth focus exclusively on issues pertaining to cross-border compensation.

During the 1970s, companies based in the United States and the United Kingdom were expanding at a time when the global economy was going through a turbulent period. With double-digit inflation and fluctuating exchange rates, companies needed compensation information that was regularly updated to respond to these economic conditions. The 1970s and 1980s were a period of growth for AIRINC that continued through the 1990s.

By 2000 AIRINC had opened its first offices in Europe, one in the Netherlands and the other in Germany.

In 2001 James Reid was appointed CEO; John Senko, Vice President Client Services; and Thomas Brazier, Vice President Client Program Development.

In 2002 AIRINC opened its European headquarters in Brussels, Belgium, consolidating it with the office in Germany.

In the summer of 2008 AIRINC opened its Asia/Pacific Rim office in Hong Kong.

In December of 2008 Steve Brink was appointed President of AIRINC.

Early in 2012, AIRINC announced a partnership with Japan’s very first relocation consultancy, Relocation International.

Responding to increased client demand for a local presence, AIRINC opened a United Kingdom office in London on March 5, 2012.

In the spring of 2012, AIRINC formed a partnership with Miller & Cambridge in India, expanding further to better support clients.

In 2013, Laura Bayne was appointed Vice President, Technology Solutions and Jeff Hawk Vice President, Data and Analysis.

Today, AIRINC manages over 850 client accounts from five full-service offices in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA; Brussels, Belgium; Amsterdam, Netherlands; London, UK; and Hong Kong, China as well as a satellite office in Munich, Germany.

AIRINC is still the leading consulting and data services company helping organizations address the complex issues of talent mobility and assessment of global pay competitiveness.