Textron, parent company of Cessna Aircraft, held its first-quarter 2013 earnings call yesterday, and the news was not particularly uplifting for its Wichita-based business segment. Customers in the light jet market, who tend to be small business owners, continue to defer purchase decisions, “reflecting continued concerns about their financial outlook,” said Textron chairman and CEO Scott Donnelly. As a result, he continued, Cessna delivered 32 new jets in the first quarter, six fewer than the same quarter last year, “resulting in a segment loss in the quarter of $8 million.”
The number of Eurocopters based in China for both civil and parapublic operators has now reached the 100-aircraft mark. According to Eurocopter, the milestone helicopter–an EC120 light single–was recently delivered to an investor group that will provide “tailored solutions to support the development of helicopter flying clubs.” The company sold 16 turbine helicopters to Chinese commercial and parapublic operators last year, a 54-percent year-over-year increase. It claims a 40-percent share of the market for helicopters in China.
Boeing Business Jets celebrated the completion of the first BBJ for China’s Nanshan Jet at a ceremony yesterday at ABACE 2013 in Shanghai. “The Nanshan Group is an excellent example of a customer who understands the unique capabilities of the Boeing Business Jet and how this airplane addresses the needs of emerging Chinese global business,” said Boeing Business Jets president Steve Taylor.
Hong Kong-based Pacific-China Aero Technology (PCAT) has signed an exclusive training agreement with global training provider CAE, which is based in Canada. PCAT is a new customer for CAE (Booth P1012) and will send pilots for training in the Gulfstream G450, Beechcraft King Air 350, Cessna Citation XLS, XL, Sovereign and III platforms. Pilot training begins in May on the Sovereign at CAE’s facility near New York City.
At last year’s ABACE show, potential helicopter exhibitors were told that they had to truck their aircraft into the static display because of a ban on helicopters at Hongqiao Airport. That policy changed this year.
“On Sunday, a Bell 407 was the first civil helicopter ever to land here in Hongqiao,” said Roger Whyte, NBAA’s special counsel to the president. “It wasn’t easy to get permission, and it’s taken a long time to go through all the authorities to get permission, but we got it.”
Hong Kong-based Jetsolution International Services, a business aviation consultancy, announced here at ABACE 2013 a partnership with Switzerland’s Global Jet (Booth P103) aimed at supporting Jetsolution’s aircraft-owner clients in Asia.
After spending many years introducing business jets to Chinese owners and founding his own company in 2010 to serve the rapidly evolving market for business aviation in China, Jason Liao has developed a unique perspective about general aviation operations in China. He is also the U.S. National Business Aviation Association’s chief representative in Asia.
Global Jet, a charter/management firm headquartered in Geneva, has added new business jets to its fleet and re-launched its website to deliver more information about its services and the aircraft that it has available for charter.
BizJet International, Lufthansa Technik’s Tulsa, Okla.-based subsidiary, will be supporting the Rolls-Royce Tay 611-8C used on the Gulfstream G450. BizJet is already an authorized overhaul facility for the Rolls-Royce Spey 511-8, which powers the GII and GIII; and the Rolls-Royce Tay 611-8, which powers the GIV/IV-SP.
Jet Aviation Hong Kong has received approval from the FAA to provide line and base maintenance for the Gulfstream G650. The approval allows the MRO to provide maintenance, alterations and repair services. The Hong Kong maintenance facility also supports the G400/450/500/550.