HBC Paves Future As Standalone ‘Beechcraft Corp.,’ Without Jets
By Kerry Lynch, Joseph C. Anselmo
Source: Business Aviation
While China could be a possibility, the Chinese don’t necessarily need Hawker to advance their capabilities; they are negotiating partnerships with other Western aircraft builders, including Cessna.
Pelton believes a potential sale of the jets to China is unlikely, and there may be few takers in markets where light and mid-size jets are still struggling to find a footing. He also notes that there is a sad nostalgia to the potential end of the Hawker line, saying, “The Hawker has a very loyal and large customer base.”
Having said that, Pelton says the biggest surprise in the most recent announcement was the lack of discussion about other potential bidders. A number of companies had bid on Hawker Beechcraft before Superior Air Beijing emerged in the forefront.
In July, Scott Donnelly, chairman of Cessna parent company Textron, said there were parts of the company of interest to Cessna, and just last week said he was still monitoring the situation. Pelton agrees, noting the trainers and King Airs could be particularly attractive additions.
Pelton also agrees with Foley that the debt-holders will be “very active” in trying to improve their financial position in the transaction.
Whatever happens, there are more chapters to be written in the Hawker saga. “We’ve maintained all along that it would be a surprise ending, but this is just one step toward that ending,” Foley says. “The permutations of how this thing could end up are limitless.”