A major hurdle facing Hawker Beechcraft in its effort to restructure and emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy is the sale of the Wichita OEM’s inventory of Hawker 4000s. The hearing date for the company’s request for court approval of the sale is now set for December 11, following a decision last week by judge Stuart Bernstein to deny the company’s request for an expedited hearing and sale.
The closing of some Hawker Beechcraft (HBC) factory-owned service centers as a result of the manufacturer’s bankruptcy has changed the way customers have their aircraft maintained, especially in the Southwest U.S. Previously, the factory-owned HBC center in Mesa, Ariz., pulled business from the West Coast, Mexico and other areas.
A bankruptcy judge declined to sign an order yesterday allowing Hawker Beechcraft to expedite the sale of approximately 13 new, three in-production and four used Hawker 4000 business jets. On November 16, the company had asked for court authorization of the sale “for the best price possible under the circumstances, on an ‘as-is-where-is’ basis, with no warranty or support commitments.”
Biozyme, the owner of a Hawker Beechcraft (HBC) Premier IA, has filed an objection with the bankruptcy court handling the Hawker Beechcraft proceedings, questioning the manufacturer’s plan to suspend warranty coverage as part of its efforts to exit bankruptcy.
BBA Aviation subsidiary Ontic is expanding its capabilities. At its center-of-excellence MRO facility in Houston, the aftermarket support company is adding services for Hawker Beechcraft’s line of King Airs. Among the services offered are repair and overhaul of the turboprop twin’s landing gear, flight controls and ancillary structures including airframe structural and sheet metal work. Other systems such as the environmental and pneumatic control, mechanical power transfer and oxygen containment and distribution are also included in the services menu.
With the new Beechcraft Corp. exiting the jet business when Hawker Beechcraft emerges from bankruptcy as a standalone company in the spring, the company sought to clarify its position with regard to warranties today at the NBAA Convention.
Hawker Beechcraft is moving ahead with restructuring during Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, and in a press conference here yesterday HBC chairman Bill Boisture made it clear the new Beechcraft Corp. that emerges in the first quarter of next year will focus on the turboprop and piston aircraft lines.
Reaction to the collapse of negotiations between Hawker Beechcraft and Superior Aviation Beijing seems to be less that of surprise and more about the inevitability of the dead end the two companies reached.
In a reorganization plan filed in June with the bankruptcy court, Hawker Beechcraft listed a number of options and assumptions available during the process, among them that the company might cease all jet production–something the company reiterated it planned to do last week when announcing it would emerge from bankruptcy as standalone company Beechcraft Corp.
After four months of intense negotiation, a deal for the sale of Hawker Beechcraft to Superior Aviation Beijing collapsed October 18 with an announcement by HBC that the parties could not come to terms and it would proceed with the stand-alone plan of reorganization.