A group of Eclipse 500 owners and Hawker Beechcraft (HBC) today announced the signing of a non-binding letter of intent under which HBC’s service network would provide maintenance and upgrades for Eclipse Owners Group (EOG) members. The two parties are now negotiating a “definitive binding agreement,” according to an EOG statement.
As the liquidation process for the assets of bankrupt Eclipse Aviation drags on, four groups have announced proposals to buy those assets and restart product support and in some cases production for the orphaned Eclipse 500 very light jet. There may be Chinese interest in bidding on the Eclipse assets, too.
In a letter sent to employees on Tuesday, Eclipse Aviation general manager Michael McConnell and CFO Mark Borseth wrote that “our company is out of time and money” and that the company’s senior secured creditors filed a motion in bankruptcy court for Chapter 7 liquidation. The plan by Eclipse’s largest shareholder, Etirc Aviation, to buy the company’s assets and eventually restart production of the Eclipse 500 VLJ has failed, they said.
On February 18, Eclipse Aviation’s board of directors elected to furlough most of the remaining 800 employees to conserve cash and allow more time to complete the bankruptcy court-approved sale of Eclipse Aviation to EclipseJet International. The latter is an affiliate of Eclipse Aviation CEO Roel Pieper’s company Etirc Aviation, which is Eclipse’s largest shareholder. The bankruptcy judge approved the Chapter 11 sale
Although the bankruptcy court approved the sale of Eclipse Aviation to EclipseJet International on January 20, the financing to complete the sale has yet to be finalized.
Judge Mary Walrath of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware on January 20 approved the sale of bankrupt VLJ manufacturer Eclipse Aviation’s assets to EclipseJet Aviation International, an affiliate of Etirc Aviation. No other bidders surfaced. The court approved the sale of Eclipse’s assets for $28 million in cash, $160 million in promissory notes and 15-percent equity to preferred shareholders.
Judge Mary Walrath of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware on Tuesday approved the sale of bankrupt VLJ manufacturer Eclipse Aviation’s assets to EclipseJet Aviation International, an affiliate of Etirc Aviation. No other bidders surfaced. The court approved the sale of Eclipse’s assets for $28 million in cash, $160 million in promissory notes and equity.
Eclipse Aviation filed for Chapter 11 protection in U.S. bankruptcy court in Delaware on November 25, leaving creditors holding $702.6 million in claims. The move closely followed two major achievements in the company’s history, EASA certification of the Eclipse 500 very light jet and FAA certification of the Avio NG 1.5 avionics system.
Just one day after filing Chapter 11 bankruptcy last Tuesday, a group of investors, including European distributor Etirc Aviation, received court approval to provide interim financing to keep the very light jet manufacturer open and its 954 employees working. The financing is intended to ensure Eclipse Aviation is a viable entity when its assets go up for public auction next month.
Just days after Eclipse Aviation achieved two key milestones–EASA and Avio NG 1.5 certification–the pioneering VLJ manufacturer this morning filed for Chapter 11 protection in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware. At the same time, Eclipse Aviation entered into an agreement to sell “substantially all of its assets” to an affiliate of Etirc Aviation of Luxembourg.