tuesday, 30 october of 2012

Hawker plans year-end decision on jet products

Bankruptcy restructuring

Hawker plans year-end decision on jet products

Hawker Beechcraft Inc. said it expects to make a decision on shedding its jet business by the year-end as part of the company's bankruptcy restructuring.

Acquisition talks between Hawker and Superior Aviation Beijing Co. collapsed this month, prompting Hawker to plan to emerge as a stand-alone company through its Chapter 11 restructuring, which began in May. As part of that process, the new company, to be dubbed Beechcraft Corp., would separate or close its jet-products line, which was particularly hard hit by the recession.

Hawker walked away from the Superior talks with a $50 million deposit that Superior had put down as insurance in case the collapsed talks.

Hawker, based in Wichita, Kan., will have shed $2.5 billion in debt through the restructuring process when it exits bankruptcy in the first quarter, Hawker Chairman Bill Boisture told reporters Monday at the National Business Aviation Association conference here.

Mr. Boisture declined to specify the number of bidders with whom Hawker is in talks over its jet business but said many of the original bidders who were interested before the exclusive talks began with Superior had returned. There were around six potential buyers before the Superior talks became exclusive.

As part of its reorganization, Hawker also would scale back the services it offers for some of its current aircraft, and the stand-alone company would introduce two or three new aircraft.

Shawn Vick, Hawker executive vice president, said a new concept propeller aircraft would include an engine provided by General Electric Co. or United Technologies Corp. unit Pratt & Whitney Canada.

(Published by WSJ - October 29, 2012)

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