Piper To Shut Down for Week of August 9

 - June 29, 2010, 11:58 AM

Piper Aircraft told employees yesterday it will shut down operations for the week of August 9. With some exceptions, all staff, including company management, will be unpaid for that week. The exceptions will be workers developing the PiperJet and those devoted to delivery of essential parts and finished aircraft. Piper executive v-p Randy Groom, appointed to the position in April, told AIN this afternoon that the week-long shutdown is being implemented in lieu of layoffs as the company (which has boosted its workforce to 900 from 580 since late last year) reacts to sluggish demand. Piper initially hoped to produce 200 aircraft this year but has since retrenched, revising the number to 160, said Groom, because some anticipated trainer fleet sales are requiring more time to materialize. Last year Piper sold between 90 and 100 aircraft, and had been expecting more demand this year in the Pacific Rim region but it has failed to materialize. On May 1 last year Piper was acquired by Imprimis, a Brunei-based corporate finance and investment management firm that, Groom told AIN, “remains fully committed to Piper and its bright future.”