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.
Three European operators signed up for the Hawker 4000 super-midsize jet–ordering one each yesterday at the EBACE show. The first one will go to Bucharest, Romania-based InterAviation, a charter operator that serves mainly the Middle East, Europe, Russia and other CIS countries. The second is being purchased by Orion-Malta, a company headquartered at Malta’s Luqa Airport. Both operators already have a Hawker 900XP in their fleet.
As of April 16, Hawker Beechcraft had not released its 2011 financial report, but the obligatory 10-K form filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission paints a picture of a difficult road ahead for the company.
In a statement issued April 13 announcing the filing, CEO Steve Miller said the document reflects “the combined effect of the prolonged weakness in our market that has continued to affect our business and the heavy debt burden the company has operated under since 2007.”
About a week after it revealed that it posted a $632.8 million loss last year, Hawker Beechcraft issued a 60-day warning to workers yesterday, noting that it “will lay off approximately 350 employees in several areas of operations in Wichita.” The company currently employs about 4,700 workers in Wichita.
Haggan Aviation has hired Yorkk Swick as general manager. Swick has extensive company management experience as well as many years serving both airframe and engine customers. He has spent the past 10 years developing and managing the mobile service team concept, supporting the TFE731 and CFE738 engines and the GTCP36-100 and GTCP36-150 APUs. Haggan Aviation is a Part 145 repair station located at Centennial Airport in Englewood, Colo. It specializes in heavy maintenance on Learjets and Hawkers.
Hawker Beechcraft is marking its 80th anniversary this year as it enjoys strong growth in China, and Asian markets in general. As part of its celebrations the U.S. company has brought three of its key airplanes to the ABACE show: the super-midsize Hawker 4000; the midsize Hawker 900XP; and the Beechcraft King Air C90GTx twin turboprop.
FlightSafety International has promoted John Brasfield to manager of the Cessna Aircraft Maintenance Learning Center in Wichita. Brasfield has held a number of positions of increasing responsibility since joining FlightSafety in 1999 at its Hawker Beechcraft Learning Center in Wichita. He joined the company as an instructor, served as program manager for training on the Beechjet, Hawker 800XP and Hawker Horizon and then as director of programs. He most recently served as assistant manager of the Wichita Cessna Learning Center.
Hawker Beechcraft announced yesterday that it “is implementing a furlough of its supply chain and final-assembly Premier IA and Hawker 4000 line in Wichita to synchronize its production line with availability of composite material from a key supplier.” While Hawker Beechcraft would not confirm the identity of this supplier, industry sources told AIN that the problem stems from epoxy resin supplier Cytec Engineering. At press time, Cytec had not responded to AIN’s inquiries seeking comment.
EADS’s board of directors has selected Tom Enders, CEO of Airbus, to succeed EADS CEO Louis Gallois when his five-year term expires at the end of May after the company’s annual meeting. At that time Arnaud Lagardère, managing partner of Lagardère SCA, will assume the role of chairman of the board, a position currently held by Bodo Uebber.