AAI Forges Ahead on A700
AAI Acquisition, which bought the assets of bankrupt Adam Aircraft in April, now has about 200 employees and says that design, manufacture and test activities have resumed for the A700 very light jet. The company is backed by Russian investment firm Industrial Investors/Kaskol, which is injecting capital as the company reaches certain milestones. According to CEO Jack Braly, AAI is picking up where the former company left off on the twinjet program, adding that the FAA has agreed to accept A700 certification work previously completed by Adam Aircraft. AAI is solely focused on the A700 and has no plans to support the five A500 piston twins delivered by Adam Aircraft, other than its obligation as type certificate holder to work with the FAA if Airworthiness Directives are issued against the orphaned model. The company anticipates FAA certification for the approximately $3 million twinjet in the first half of 2010, with EASA approval a year later. AAI plans to announce an avionics vendor in the next month, and Braly told AIN that it will be the L-3 SmartDeck, Avidyne Entegra II or Garmin G1000. AAI will also rebrand the company by year-end.