Cessna announced yesterday that its authorized sales representative for the region, Wallan Aviation in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, has placed an order for 25 airplanes valued at $110 million. Eleven are Citation business jets and the rest single-engine airplanes, 10 of which Wallan will use for a flight school it plans to establish in Riyadh next year.
Wallan Aviation, Cessna’s Middle East distributor, has become the first and only company to date to place advance orders for five of the U.S. manufacturer’s proposed new large cabin business jet. Cessna has yet to officially launch a new aircraft development based on its so-called Large Cabin Concept (LCC) but has made it clear that the program will go ahead.
Operators of Cessna 441 Conquest IIs have a new option for compliance with
the continuous inspection program Cessna initiated last June.
The revised program recommends that Part 91 and Part 135 operators comply with a series of supplemental inspection documents (SID) that are now being incorporated into an expanded phase inspection program with a compliance deadline of September 1 next year.
Cessna reached a new labor agreement with the union representing nearly 6,000 of its workers. The Textron subsidiary concluded the three-year contract settlement with the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers after a lengthy and often contentious bargaining process. “Cessna is the leader in the aviation industry and we certainly feel this was an industry-leading contract,” said Bob Wood, a union spokesman.
Cessna Aircraft delivered 42 Citations in the third quarter, compared with 74 in the same period last year, bringing nine-month delivery totals this year to 148 versus 223 last year. The company expects to finish this year with 195 Citation deliveries, compared with 305 last year. The manufacturer expects to deliver even fewer Citations next year–between 165 and 170.
Textron president and CEO Lewis Campbell last month credited Cessna and Bell Helicopter deliveries for the company’s third-quarter revenue increase of 15 percent, to $3.3 billion. Profits increased 36 percent, to $423 million. Cessna delivered 103 Citations in the third quarter and estimates that it will deliver 380 business jets this year. Campbell expects Cessna to deliver 470 Citations next year.
Ken Harness has been named COO of Diamond Aircraft’s North American operations. He comes from Eclipse Aviation, where he was vice president of engineering. In his new role he will oversee engineering, flight test, manufacturing and quality for all Diamond aircraft, including the new D-Jet, at the company’s facility in London, Ontario.
Cessna’s intended acquisition of Bend, Ore.-based Columbia Aircraft Manufacturing, announced late in September, will complement Cessna’s latest piston-engine development, the next-generation piston (NGP). Not much is known about the NGP; Cessna showed the all-composite high-wing, which is in flight test, at the 2006 EAA AirVenture show in Oshkosh, Wis., but only by flying it over the airfield, thereby denying attendees a close-up look.
Asked why Textron’s third-quarter revenues are up 15 percent, to $3.3 billion, and profits have skyrocketed 36 percent, to $423 million, company president and CEO Lewis Campbell said during an investor call this morning, “Aircraft deliveries by Cessna, and to a lesser extent Bell Helicopter.” Third-quarter deliveries at Bell came in at 40 helicopters, and Textron expects the division to ship a total of 175 this year.
Buyers of certain Cessna Caravans can receive a $75,000 saving over the turbine single’s price of approximately $1.5 million. Customers purchasing one of a selected group of serial numbers now may choose between the zero-percent initial financing offer introduced last year or receive the $75,000 saving. Although there are more than 1,300 Caravans flying worldwide, sales have dropped sharply over the last few years.