Textron Continues Strong in Second Quarter

 - July 23, 2008, 11:41 AM

Buoyed by its Bell and Cessna properties, Textron recorded second-quarter profits up 23 percent from the same period last year, the company announced at a conference call this morning. Pointing to a backlog at Cessna of 1,638 business jets, Textron reaffirmed its outlook for the remainder of 2008 and forecast a solid market for the Citation line into 2011. Even against a negative economic backdrop, “The story at Cessna remains extremely strong,” said Textron chairman, president and CEO Lewis Campbell. The Wichita-based aircraft manufacturer expects to deliver 470 business jets this year. Second-quarter 2008 revenues at Cessna increased $289 million over the same period in 2007, reflecting delivery of 117 business jets versus 95 the previous year. Lewis gave credit for Cessna’s solid performance in great part to the growth in orders from outside the U.S. Textron’s Bell profits increased by $61 million over the previous period, in large part due to a strong government market. Bell’s commercial helicopter business revenues increased $5 million, while profit was down $3 million. The decrease in profit was attributed to “inflation, unfavorable cost performance and lower volume.” Putting a positive spin on the commercial helicopter outlook, however, Textron noted that the backlog is “the largest we’ve ever had,” stretching into 2014.