Cessna, Bell Provide Lift for Textron’s Wings

 - July 19, 2012, 4:30 PM
Cessna delivered 49 Citations in the second quarter of 2012, 11 more than it shipped in the same period a year ago.

Cessna Aircraft and Bell Helicopter drove most of the second-quarter growth at parent company Textron, chairman and CEO Scott Donnelly said during an investor conference call this morning. Combined, the two aviation segments accounted for $1.82 billion of Textron’s $3 billion in revenues and $187 million of its $288 million profit during the quarter.

Cessna reported $756 million in second-quarter revenues, up $111 million from a year ago, while profits rose by $30 million, to $35 million. The higher revenues were the result of increased Citation deliveries in the period–49 versus 38 a year ago. Speaking of the current market environment, Donnelly said, “We’re seeing a slow, steady recovery in the light to midsize jet segments.”

Cessna’s backlog at the end of the second quarter stood at $1.5 billion, down $196 million from March 31. However, Donnelly specifically noted that the recent NetJets order for Citation Latitudes is not included in the backlog. Instead, he said, these orders won’t be added to backlog “until delivery serial numbers are assigned, which is still a few years off.”

Meanwhile, Bell continues to be the breadwinner at Textron. The division took in nearly $1.06 billion in the second quarter, a $184 million year-over-year increase, and profit increased $32 million, to $152 million, reflecting “higher volume and favorable mix in our commercial business.” Bell’s backlog as of June 30 was $6.7 billion, down $394 million from the end of the first quarter.