Eclipse Aerospace Reopens Shuttered ABQ Facility

 - September 3, 2009, 12:54 PM

On Tuesday morning at Albuquerque International Airport, Mason Holland and Michael Press were joined by Albuquerque mayor Martin Chávez to celebrate the reopening of formerly bankrupt Eclipse Aviation. Holland, chairman and president of the reborn company, and executive vice president Press, who owns an Eclipse 500 very light jet, raised $20 million in cash from private equity investors and signed notes for an additional $20 million in exchange for all of the assets of Eclipse Aviation. Although the new company is named Eclipse Aerospace, it will do business as Eclipse Aviation. The new company has already hired 15 employees and should reach 30 by the end of the month, Press said. First steps include a physical inventory; then Eclipse will start selling parts and providing maintenance and upgrades to E500 owners. Eclipse Aerospace also purchased the 28 former DayJet E500s and plans to refurbish and sell those. “The only reason Mason and I did it is [the E500] is such a great product, we see a great future for it,” said Press. Once the existing 259 E500s are fully upgraded, he added, “we’ll decide on what the E550 is going to look like,” referring to plans to build new-production Eclipse twinjets.