Hawker Beech Deal Off; Bizjets in Jeopardy

Superior deal is off; jet business is in question.

Hawker Beechcraft
Hawker Beechcraft

Hawker Beechcraft today announced that it is planning to move forward from bankruptcy as a standalone company, negating a deal that was in the works with China's Superior Aviation Beijing Co. While the company is walking away with a $50 million non-refundable deposit from Superior, Hawker Beechcraft's CEO Robert S. "Steve" Miller said: "We are disappointed that the transaction did not come to fruition."

The company plans to rename itself Beechcraft Corporation. The omission of the Hawker name is a clear statement of the intent to focus on its piston, turboprop and trainer/attack aircraft. Final plans for the Hawker business jets are still being evaluated, but the company said the jet line will likely be sold or discontinued.

In a letter to its suppliers dated Oct. 18, Hawker Beechcraft wrote: "Our business plan will focus on our turboprop, piston, special mission and trainer/attack aircraft, the company’s most profitable products, and on our high margin parts, maintenance, repairs and refurbishment businesses, all of which have high growth potential. The overarching goal of our plan is to ensure that our company completes the reorganization process in a strong operational and financial position."

Hawker Beechcraft filed for bankruptcy in May and will now file amendments to the Joint Plan of Reorganization (POR) and Disclosure Statement with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court.