Hawker Beechcraft Opens $20 Million Facility in Mexico
Hawker Beechcraft today announced the opening of a new $20 million facility in Chihuahua City, Mexico, where it will for the most part increase sheet-metal fabrication for King Airs and Hawkers. According to Hawker Beechcraft CEO Bill Boisture, the 180,000-sq-ft building is one of two at the Chihuahua site, where a third will be added later this year. By year-end, the Chihuahua footprint will total some 500,000 sq ft, and employment will grow from 400 to 1,000 workers. Components, including electrical wiring, produced at the Mexico facilities are shipped to Wichita, where they are integrated into the King Air and Hawker assembly process. Boisture pointed out that while some jobs have been moved to Mexico, “As part of the agreement reached with the State of Kansas in December, we’ve committed to Wichita for final aircraft assembly.” The reduction in force at Hawker Beechcraft by 800 jobs is part of a strategy Boisture announced in October to “streamline the company.” It is a strategy that included the movement of most of those jobs to its Mexico facilities and the outsourcing of a smaller number of vendors, most of which are Kansas-based.