In a decision opening the way for Hawker Beechcraft to emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy later this month, U.S. Bankruptcy Court today approved the Wichita OEM’s joint plan of reorganization. “Today’s ruling marks the final significant step in the restructuring process,” said Hawker Beechcraft CEO Steve Miller. The company said that, as part of the reorganization, it will be rebranded Beechcraft Corp.
At press time Hawker Beechcraft was expected on January 31 to seek confirmation of its plan of reorganization from bankruptcy court, allowing the company to emerge [from bankruptcy] some time in February, which is when the name change to Beechcraft Corp. will also become effective.
With Hawker Beechcraft attempting to clear the final hurdle in Chapter 11 proceedings and emerge from bankruptcy, Judge Stuart Bernstein said earlier today that he would approve the joint plan of reorganization for all but one of the subsidiaries currently under Chapter 11 protection. Bernstein reserved judgment regarding the Hawker Beechcraft Corp.
Hawker Beechcraft, in what it hopes is the final phase of Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings, saw its employment level in Kansas drop to 3,372 as of December 31, triggering an automatic reduction in the annual incentive payment from the State of Kansas. In 2010 the company was granted $45 million in incentives by the state, based on an agreement to maintain employment in Kansas at 4,000.
Hawker Beechcraft’s key creditors voted “overwhelmingly” on Friday to approve the Wichita-based aircraft manufacturer’s proposed joint plan of reorganization as part of its efforts to emerge from bankruptcy. JPMorgan Securities and Credit Suisse Securities will jointly structure, arrange and syndicate $600 million in exit financing for the post-bankruptcy standalone company, Beechcraft Corp.
Hawker Beechcraft key creditors voted “overwhelmingly” today to approve the Wichita-based OEM’s proposed Joint Plan of Reorganization as part of its efforts to emerge from bankruptcy.
Nextant Aerospace named Sean McGeough as president today to help the Cleveland-based company build on its growth with the remanufactured 400XT. McGeough, previously Hawker Beechcraft president for Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific, will concentrate on developing strategies that will allow Nextant to boost its global market penetration. Since late 2011 the company has delivered 25 Nextant 400XTs to buyers on four continents and has a sales backlog exceeding $175 million.
Piper Aircraft appointed James Funk as vice president of operations today, a position where he will be responsible for aircraft manufacturing operations, production engineering, logistics and quality. He brings nearly 30 years of operations management, manufacturing engineering and program leadership experience to Piper. Before joining Piper, Funk was Bombardier Learjet’s general manager of operations for the Learjet 85 program. Before that, he was vice president of operations for Hawker Beechcraft and its predecessor, Raytheon Aircraft.
Business aviation veteran Jim Christiansen joined FlightSafety International as vice president for international business development, where he will lead the training company’s efforts to increase the support it provides to customers who live outside the U.S.
In a filing in bankruptcy court just before Christmas, Hawker Beechcraft asked for court approval to shed two underfunded pension plans covering some 9,500 non-union workers and retirees. The request is part of an agreement with the federal government’s Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. (PBGC) and the OEM’s machinists’ union. Terms of the agreement require PBGC to assume responsibility for the two terminated pensions, while Hawker Beechcraft will keep the pension plan covering its 8,200 current and former union employees. A hearing to consider the plan is scheduled for January 17.