Reactions have been mixed in the wake of yesterday’s announcement that Superior Aviation of Beijing, China, has agreed to acquire financially troubled Hawker Beechcraft, minus Hawker Beechcraft Defense Co. (HBDC) for $1.79 billion. “I have no idea why Hawker Beechcraft would be worth $1.8 billion without its defense side,” Teal Group vice president of aerospace analysis Richard Aboulafia told AIN. “Given the money needed to reorganize, that’s a very high price.”
Late last night, Hawker Beechcraft announced that China-based Superior Aviation Beijing Co. has signed an “exclusivity agreement” to buy the whole U.S. aircraft manufacturer, minus its defense business. Hawker Beechcraft filed for U.S. Chapter 11 reorganization in May and just last week outlined a framework to exit this protection by year-end. Part of this plan included a potential sale, which is now the likely outcome.
Government officials, Bombardier Aerospace executives and other stakeholders broke ground yesterday on a $56 million, one-million-square-foot expansion at the Learjet Wichita campus.
Spirit AeroSystems’ Wichita employees returned to work en masse today to restart production following successful efforts to restore power and clean debris left by a tornado that tore through the company’s 45-building campus on April 14. Spirit said it intends to work on “quickly ramping back up to full-rate production” now that its workers have returned.
Spirit AeroSystems said it expects its Wichita line employees to return to work next Monday to restart production following efforts to restore power and clean debris left by a tornado that tore through its 45-building campus last weekend.
Wichita-based Mid-Continent Instruments has changed its name to Mid-Continent Instruments and Avionics. The company says the new name better describes its capabilities and underscores its commitment to provide general aviation repair facilities with a range of services supporting avionics, instruments and power solutions. Services include custom design, manufacturing, overhaul/exchange and repair. The company’s Van Nuys, Calif. facility provides new instrument sales and instrument overhaul.
Tornadoes that tore through Wichita on Saturday night left a path of destruction at several aircraft manufacturers but thankfully no fatalities. Damage at Hawker Beechcraft was “limited and isolated damage to the roof” of Plant IV, where final assembly of business jets and turboprops is performed, a company spokeswoman told AIN. “There is no effect on operations,” she added. Repair is under way on the building and employees have been reporting for work as scheduled this week.
Spirit Aerosystems will remain closed for at least two days after a tornado tore through its sprawling campus in Wichita on Saturday night, causing severe structural damage to at least “three or four” of the site’s 45 buildings.
At Abace today, Cessna Aircraft senior vice president for business jets Brad Thress elaborated further on the aircraft manufacturer’s joint venture with Aviation Industry Corp. of China (Avic) and the Chengdu provincial government to build midsize Citations in China. He said that the Sovereigns and Latitudes built in China will be assembled in Chengdu from components made at the company’s headquarters in Wichita. “We see this as incremental business.
Beijing-based EarthView Image signed an order for a special-mission Hawker Beechcraft King Air C90GTx today at Abace. The company will use the turboprop twin for aerial mapping. Yesterday at Abace, the Wichita aircraft manufacturer logged orders for three C90GTxs from Xinjiang Tianxiang Aviation College and the Civil Aviation University College of China. Both plan to use the King Airs for multi-engine training.