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Hawker Beechcraft in talks with Chinese company

PUBLISHED: 18:15 10 July 2012 | UPDATED: 14:17 10 October 2012

Hawker Beechcraft has reached an ‘exclusivity agreement’ with Superior Aviation Beijing, which will see the Chinese company purchase it for $1.79 billion.

Hawker Beechcraft has reached an ‘exclusivity agreement’ with Superior Aviation Beijing, which will see the Chinese company purchase it for $1.79 billion.


Under the terms of the agreement, Superior will also make payments over the next six weeks to support ongoing jet-related operations.


The transaction will not include Hawker Beechcraft Defense Company, which will remain a separate entity. In the event that this is sold, up to $400 million of the $1.79 billion purchase price will be refundable to Superior.


Robert S. 'Steve' Miller, CEO of Hawker Beechcraft Inc. – which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy during May - said:


“Superior has had a long-standing interest in the commercial aircraft business of Hawker Beechcraft, having first approached the company several years ago regarding a potential strategic partnership. With Superior’s previous experience operating a U.S. business and its demonstrated ability to quickly restore a business to profitability after emerging from Chapter 11, we believe a transaction with Superior would maximize value for Hawker Beechcraft and its stakeholders.


“Importantly, this combination would give Hawker Beechcraft greater access to the Chinese business and general aviation marketplace, which is forecast to grow more than 10 per cent a year for the next 10-15 years. We look forward to working toward a definitive agreement.”


The exclusivity period will last for 45 days, during which the companies must negotiate definitive documentation of the transaction.


If an agreement is not reached within this time then Beechcraft will seek confirmation of the Joint Plan of Reorganization that it filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court on 30 June 2012. This contemplates the company emerging as a standalone entity with a more focused portfolio of aircraft.


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