Reactions have been heavily mixed in the wake of Monday night’s announcement that Superior Aviation of Beijing, China, has agreed to acquire financially troubled Hawker Beechcraft, minus its Hawker Beechcraft Defense Company (HBDC) division, for $1.79 billion. The majority of business aviation analysts contacted by AIN believe the Chinese firm is overpaying for the Wichita, Kansas-based aircraft manufacturer, which is in Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
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.”
Superior Aviation of Beijing, China, has agreed to acquire financially troubled Hawker Beechcraft for $1.79 billion. Under the terms of the “strategic combination,” Superior Aviation also agrees to make payments over the next six weeks of the “exclusivity period” to support ongoing jet-related operations as a means of sustaining the jet business until the transaction closes.
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.
As of mid-June the next hurdle for Hawker Beechcraft was the June 30 deadline to file its plan of reorganization with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan.
“The plan provides specific details regarding how the company plans to pay creditors and allow the business to be successful in the long term,” said an HBC spokeswoman.
In a hearing yesterday that lasted barely 10 minutes in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York, Hawker Beechcraft made an obligatory filing in compliance with Chapter 11 reporting requirements. As part of the report, HBC noted a $90 million loss for the month of May that included $33 million in operating losses.
Hawker Beechcraft is now just 11 days from a deadline to file its “plan of reorganization” with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan, and it’s possible that the plan could involve the sale of the company. “The plan provides specific details regarding how the company plans to pay creditors and allow the business to be successful in the long term,” an HBC spokeswoman told AIN.
Hawker Beechcraft filed for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11 on May 3, and if activity at the recent European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition is any indication, the Wichita aircraft manufacturer may be down, but it is definitely not out.
Hawker Beechcraft secured orders for 11 aircraft–including three Hawker 4000s, a Hawker 400XPR, six King Air 350i turboprops and a King Air 250–worth more than $120 million during EBACE 2012 last week.
Hawker Beechcraft, currently in bankruptcy protection, continues to expand its global footprint. The OEM’s Global Customer Support (GCS) has appointed EASA Part 145-approved Gama Support Services at Farnborough Airport, UK, to its worldwide network of limited service centers to support the King Air 200, 250, 300 and 350 and the Premier business jet. In addition, Gama Support Services will support the Baron and Bonanza as an authorized service center.