Dubai Investors Buy Majority Stake in Sino Swearingen
Dubai-based Emirates Investment & Development (Emivest) yesterday obtained U.S. approval to acquire an 80-percent stake from the Taiwanese government in San Antonio-based Sino Swearingen Aircraft. According to a Emivest spokesman, the deal to buy the manufacturer of the SJ30 light jet will formally close in the next few days. He told AIN the remaining 20-percent share will be held by the Taiwanese government, as well as SJ30 designer Ed Swearingen and original investor Douglas Jaffe. Under terms of the deal, which has been in the works since the Dubai Air Show in November, Emivest will pump a minimum of $150 million into the aircraft manufacturer to restart and accelerate production of the SJ30. Taiwan has reportedly injected nearly $700 million into Sino Swearingen over the 13 years it has held a majority stake in the company, but a political fallout over this investment stalled the needed additional government funding to get production started in earnest. So far, only two SJ30s have been delivered since the twinjet obtained FAA certification in November 2006. Sino Swearingen claims orders for about 300 SJ30s, 159 of which are from UK-based distributor Action Aviation.