Piper Aircraft CEO Simon Caldecott Retiring

 - March 23, 2021, 9:51 AM
Piper president and CEO Simon Caldecott, who is retiring, unveiled the Pilot 100 and 100i basic trainers at Sun 'n' Fun 2019 in Lakeland, Florida. (Photo: Chad Trautvetter/AIN)

Piper Aircraft president and CEO Simon Caldecott is retiring on April 2 after leading the Vero Beach, Florida aircraft manufacturer for the past 10 years and spending 47 years in the aviation industry. The company leadership has been working with the board of directors over the past several months on a succession plan and expects to announce a new leadership structure soon, Piper said.

“I am proud of the dedicated team at Piper and our global dealership network,” Caldecott added. “With everything in place, the company’s future prospects are extremely encouraging and I look forward to a smooth transition.”

Caldecott took the reins at Piper in 2011 and led the company during a rapid expansion as it extended its reach into the training market and expand its M-Class product line.  When he became CEO, Piper had delivered 136 aircraft valued at $130 million. By 2019, that had swelled to 290 aircraft valued at $260 million.

Under his stewardship, Piper introduced the M600 turboprop single and launched the Garmin Autoland technology, Halo, on the M600 SLS. Piper received approval for that technology in May 2020. And in December, Piper certified and began delivery of its Pilot 100i trainer as well.

“It has been an honor and privilege leading Piper Aircraft through a transformative journey, from a legacy aircraft manufacturer to the first general aviation manufacturer to certify an Autoland-equipped general aviation aircraft,” Caldecott said. “We strengthened the leadership team with new talent, made major facility improvements to make a safer workplace, and strengthened relations with the community, as well as with major suppliers.”