Beechcraft reports more deliveries for second quarter

07/29/2013 11:12 AM

08/08/2014 10:18 AM

The restructured Beechcraft Corp. delivered 56 commercial and military airplanes in the second quarter, compared to 32 delivered during the same time last year, the company reported Monday.

Beechcraft’s 2013 deliveries for the quarter were up 75 percent from the same time a year ago. (The numbers do not include last year’s business jet deliveries. Beechcraft stopped manufacturing jets as it worked through its bankruptcy proceedings last year.)

Beechcraft’s Plant III, its Hawker 4000 and Premier type certificates, and its Little Rock Completions Facility lease are currently up for sale. The company has said it hopes to have a buyer this year.

For the first half of 2013 the company, which emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy in February, delivered 115 Beechcraft airplanes, compared to 69 in the first half of 2012, up 66 percent.

Beechcraft released the news as the 61st annual Experimental Aircraft Association’s AirVenture fly-in opened in Oshkosh, Wis.

The show runs through Sunday.

Beechcraft is progressing through the year in a strong position, said Bill Boisture, Beechcraft’s CEO.

“While the global economic conditions remain difficult, the value proposition and versatility of our products continue to resonate with customers,” Boisture said. “In addition, we are seeing positive growth in our Global Customer Support and Global Mission Support businesses, along with good activity in our Defense and Special Mission platforms.”

During the second quarter 2013, the company delivered 24 King Airs, 12 Barons, nine Bonanzas and 11 T-6 military trainers.

The company also delivered its 4,000th Model 36 Bonanza. Work progressed toward certification of the Hawker 400XPR upgrade program with the first flight of the test plane with winglets.

News from Oshkosh

In other AirVenture news:

• Cessna unveiled what it calls the Night Sky edition, for its Turbo Stationair, which features a limited edition heat-reflecting black and red paint scheme. It includes a specially painted McCauley propeller to complement the design.

The solar heat reflective coating is provided by Netherlands-based AkzoNobel N.V. It allows for darker paint to be used on non-traditional surfaces of the aircraft, such as the wings, Cessna said.

“The darker paint scheme on the Night Sky edition of the Stationair makes for an impressive looking aircraft when viewed on the ramp, as well as in the sky,” Jeff Umscheid, Cessna business leader for the Turbo Stationair, said in a statement.

• Cessna announced that it is collaborating with Kansas State University to complement K-State’s Aviation Open Distance education program.

Under the agreement, K-State will recognize training completed at any domestic Cessna Pilot Center flight school as credit toward the student’s bachelors degree in technology management at its Salina campus.

The collaboration will be made official at a signing ceremony at Cessna’s exhibit at AirVenture on Tuesday.

Students will be able to take flight training at Cessna Pilot Centers and begin receiving university credit beginning the fall semester of 2014.

• Cessna also said that it’s in the final weeks of a unique internship for seven aviation students called 2013 Discover Flying Challenge.

The purpose is to raise awareness for charitable causes and general aviation. To that end, Cessna has selected the American Red Cross, Experimental Aircraft Association Young Eagles, Special Olympics, United Way and Veterans Airlift Command as its focus.

Six pilots have their schedules managed by the seventh intern stationed at Cessna. The interns then document their flying experience through their individual Facebook and Twitter accounts. Their schedule can be followed through SocialFlight, a website and mobile app providing detailed pilot itineraries and mapped appearances.

The charity receiving the most social engagement will receive a $25,000 donation from Cessna.

The challenge kicked off June 15 at Strother Field in Winfield. The six pilot interns and their six customized Cessna 172 Skyhawks left for various parts of the country to participate in volunteer opportunities and attend community events.

• Belite Electronics in Wichita announced three new products Monday: a dual rate turn coordinator, universal LED fuel gauge and angle of attack instrumentation, the company said. Belite Electronics provides lightweight instruments for ultralight, experimental and light aircraft.

The products were designed from customer requests, the company said.

• Piper Aircraft, based in Vero Beach, Fla., announced Monday at AirVenture that Airline Transport Professionals has exercised options for 10 additional Piper Archer TX aircraft.

That increases the order from ATP so far in 2013 to 25. ATP will use the planes for flight training.

In a 100-airplane deal announced earlier this year, ATP has options for 75 more Piper Archers, the company said.

• Cirrus Aircraft, based in Duluth, Minn., said its program to build the Vision SF50 personal jet has made significant progress toward certification.

That includes the acquisition of manufacturing equipment to build the airplane.

First delivery is still expected in late 2015.

The next step in the program is building conforming aircraft for further certification and testing and preparing its Duluth headquarters and Grand Forks, N.D., facility for production, the company said.

The Vision, made from composite materials, fills the gap between high-performance pistons and traditional turboprop twins and light business jets. It will seat up to five adults and two children.

• On Tuesday, Yves “Jetman” Rossy, who bills himself as the world’s first jet-powered man, will appear at the air show.

Rossy, using a carbon-Kevlar jetwing with four engines, propels himself through the sky at upward of 150 mph, controlled by a throttle in his hand. He uses his shoulders, body and legs to steer, pitch and descend.

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