Executive Jet Investments (EJI)–a small group of largely anonymous Swiss private investors–has completed an acquisition of a majority stake in German airframer Grob for an undisclosed amount of money. The Grob family has retained a “not insignificant” minority holding, but EJI effectively has full control of the company and now runs it through a new Zurich-based holding company called Grob Aerospace AG.
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Executive Jet Investments (EJI), a Swiss investment firm led by Execujet CEO Niall Olver, has acquired a controlling stake in German-based manufacturer Grob Aerospace. The Grob family holds the remaining shares, although officials declined to disclose the exact percentage of shares owned by each entity. EJI is simultaneously renamed Grob Aerospace AG.
Piaggio shipped only three Avantis in the first nine months of this year, hardly enough to keep up with demand, particularly from one of the OEM’s largest single customers, fractional provider Avantair. Lack of new Avantis is the primary reason that Avantair will record a loss of nearly $21 million this year, according to a recent SEC filing by the company’s new owner, Ardent Acquisition.
Three of the major players in the very light jet (VLJ) arena appeared before the Senate aviation subcommittee to address concerns that the new breed of aircraft will present insuperable challenges for the ATC system. Cessna chairman, president and CEO Jack Pelton; Eclipse Aviation president Vern Raburn; and DayJet founder Ed Iacobucci took their case to Capitol Hill. Joining them were two top FAA officials and an aviation consultant.
The last Bombardier Challenger 604, S/N 5665, rolled off the assembly line at the Canadian OEM’s Montreal plant on October 3. It marks the conclusion of a long run for a design launched at the Paris Air Show in 1993. The last of 365 built, the airplane will have a highly customized executive/VIP cabin done at Midcoast Aviation in East Alton, Ill. Delivery is scheduled for the spring.
Would-be supersonic business jet (SSBJ) maker Aerion (Booth No.
Mark Fairchild, v-p of sales and marketing for Sino Swearingen Aircraft, announced two firsts at the company’s press conference on Monday, both involving the long-awaited SJ30-2. The FAA has issued the first SJ30-2 customer type rating this past August, and the first production model of the high-performance twinjet will be delivered as early as next week. The airplane, S/N 006, is in final testing.
Spectrum Aeronautical (Booth No. 2142) was looking to do something different for the cabin of the S-33 Independence light jet. “We wanted a cabin that was as much a breakthrough as the overall airplane,” said Spectrum’s vice president, Mark Jones.
The VLJ juggernaut showed no sign of slowing as Embraer landed another firm order for its line of very light jets, this time from Clearwater, Fla.-based Avantair for 20 Phenom 100s. Avantair CEO Steven Santo said he plans to accept delivery of the first airplane in June 2009, and take the balance of the order over the span of about two years. Embraer expects the Phenom 100 to earn FAA certification in mid-2008.
Honda Aircraft revealed a number of intriguing details about the HondaJet program yesterday, including the airplane’s price, performance figures and the fine points of its service-network alliance with Piper Aircraft.