Is Mooney Back? Maybe, or Maybe Not

Mooney may soon be sold to Chinese investors. Then again, maybe not. The Kerrville, Texas, company says it can neither confirm nor deny a report that a sale to a Chinese real estate investment group is imminent.

China Radio International yesterday reported that Meijing Group of China has entered negotiations with Mooney and is expected to complete a purchase of the company next month.

Mooney Chief Financial Officer Barry Hodkin told Flying he couldn't comment on the report. Hodkin was earlier quoted as saying news of a Chinese buyout was "premature." He backed away from that language when he spoke with us, saying instead that he couldn't speak "for legal reasons."

Mooney shut down operations and laid off most of its workers in 2008, nearly 80 years after the light plane manufacturer was founded by Albert and Arthur Mooney in Wichita, Kansas.

The company today isn't producing any airplanes but has been supporting customers. In July at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, Hodkin said Mooney was seeking a funding partner and hoped to resume aircraft production soon.

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