Our company’s values have not changed since the company was founded in 1932. The Beech philosophy has always been one of quality, customer satisfaction and business integrity. These values continue as our guiding principles today.
Wichita, Kan. (Vocus) March 27, 2008
This week, Hawker Beechcraft Corporation (HBC), the world’s leading business, special-mission and trainer aircraft manufacturer, celebrates another milestone in its rich history as an aviation leader—the first anniversary of Hawker Beechcraft Corporation as a private company.
The anniversary comes at an incredibly exciting time for HBC, having recently announced a record 2007 backlog, record international sales, an increased workforce to over 9,000 employees, an expanded product line with five new aircraft certified during the year, while leading the industry with revolutionary products like the composite Hawker 4000, the most advanced super-midsize jet in the world today.
On March 26, 2007, the company formerly called Raytheon Aircraft Company was acquired from Raytheon Company by GS Capital Partners, an affiliate of Goldman Sachs and Onex Partners. Raytheon Company announced it had signed a definitive agreement to sell Raytheon Aircraft Company on December 21, 2006.
“There has always been great pride in the Hawker and Beechcraft names, and as Hawker Beechcraft Corporation we have returned to the company’s heritage,” said Jim Schuster, chairman and CEO of Hawker Beechcraft Corporation. “The personal pride demonstrated by all of our employees is what makes us a great company. This has been one of the most successful years in our company’s history and, on behalf of every one of our more than 9,000 employees worldwide, I am proud to say that we are Hawker Beechcraft Corporation.”
Although the celebration honors the company’s first year as Hawker Beechcraft Corporation, the company has a rich history as a pioneer in the aviation industry. In 1932, Beech Aircraft Corporation was founded in Wichita, Kan., by Walter H. Beech when he left an executive position with Curtiss-Wright Corporation to start manufacturing airplanes from scratch with his wife and business partner, Olive Ann Beech. Last year, the company celebrated its 75th year of aviation excellence.
“The Hawker and Beechcraft brands have revolutionized the aviation industry and continue today,” said Schuster. “Our company’s values have not changed since the company was founded in 1932. The Beech philosophy has always been one of quality, customer satisfaction and business integrity. These values continue as our guiding principles today.”
From the pioneering flights of the very first Beechcraft Model 17 biplane known as the Staggerwing – to the breathtaking performance of today’s Hawker 4000 super-midsize business jet featuring advanced composite material – the company is rich in heritage, achievement and innovation. Schuster said to Hawker Beechcraft customers in a letter one year ago, “Our new name celebrates these accomplishments, and for the first time in more than a quarter of a century we are an independent, private company.”
Over the past year, Hawker Beechcraft Corporation’s accomplishments have included:
- Celebrated the 75th anniversary of Beechcraft
- The Beechcraft Bonanza turned 60 years old and is still the most sought after single engine piston in the world
- HBC certified and introduced five new aircraft into the marketplace – the Hawker 900XP, Hawker 750, Beechcraft King Air 350ER, King Air B200GT and King Air C90GTi
- The company secured multiple large fleet orders from NetJets Europe for 32 Hawker 4000s, and BJETS based in India and Singapore for 20 Hawker 850XPs and 900XPs, with an option for 10 additional aircraft
- More than $160 million dollars were invested in research and development and facility improvements
- The company achieved the highest backlog in its 75-year history in 2007 with 60 percent of bookings coming from international customers
- HBC opened its International Sales Headquarters in Chester, U.K.
- The company opened a new sheet metal facility in Chihuahua, Mexico
- Hawker Beechcraft Services announced plans to build a new maintenance and service center in Indianapolis
- HBC opened the first Hawker Beechcraft Authorized Service Center in India to support its Hawker aircraft
- The company was named the safest aircraft manufacturer in the industry
- The Federal Aviation Authority presented HBC with the Diamond Award, its most coveted honor for aircraft maintenance excellence at HBC’s facilities in Bakersfield, Indianapolis, San Antonio, Wichita, Tampa, Van Nuys and Little Rock
- The company supported several local organizations through the Hawker Beechcraft Charitable Fund with contributions totaling nearly $1 million, as well as participated in many important community events at Hawker Beechcraft locations across the world.
“I am pleased to say that today our company is stronger than ever – as is our commitment to our customers worldwide,” said Schuster. “As we begin our second year as Hawker Beechcraft, we keep in mind the values and priorities that have made our first year a success. We will continue to deliver the highest quality products and the best service and support.”
Hawker Beechcraft Corporation’s current lineup includes the Hawker® 4000, Hawker 900XP, Hawker 750 and Hawker 400XP business jets; the largest and fastest single-pilot business jet in the world, Beechcraft® Premier IA; the world’s best-selling turboprop lineup, Beechcraft King Air 350, B200GT and C90GTi; and the next generation of the time-honored classic pistons, Beechcraft Baron G58 and Beechcraft Bonanza G36.
Hawker Beechcraft Corporation is the world’s leading business, special-mission and trainer aircraft manufacturer – designing, marketing and supporting aviation products and services for businesses, governments and individuals worldwide. The company’s headquarters and major facilities are located in Wichita, Kan., with operations in Salina, Kan., Little Rock, Ark. and Chester, England, U.K. The company leads the industry with a global network of over 100 factory-owned and authorized service centers. For more information, visit http://www.hawkerbeechcraft.com.
This release may contain “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. All statements, other than statements of historical fact, including statements that address activities, events or developments that we or our management intend, expect, project, believe or anticipate will or may occur in the future are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are based on management’s assumptions and assessments in light of past experience and trends, current conditions, expected future developments and other relevant factors. They are not guarantees of future performance, and actual results may differ significantly from those envisaged by our forward-looking statements. Among the factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described or implied in the forward-looking statements are general business and economic conditions, production delays resulting from lack of regulatory certifications and other factors, competition in our existing and future markets, lack of market acceptance of our products and services, the substantial leverage and debt service resulting from our indebtedness, loss or retirement of key executives and other risks disclosed in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.