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Hawker Beechcraft Announces Sale To Chinese Firm

Jack Snell
Passengers wait to board a Raytheon Hawker Beechcraft T-1 Jayhawk.

Aircraft maker Hawker Beechcraft announced Monday that it had reached a $1.79 billion “exclusivity agreement” with a Chinese aerospace manufacturer for the sale of its business jet and general aviation operations.

Under the agreement Beijing-based aerospace manufacturer Superior Aviation Beijing will buy Hawker Beechcraft and make payments over the next six weeks to support ongoing operations until the deal is finalized.

The sale does not include Hawker Beechcraft Defense Company, which will remain a separate entity.

The deal is subject to regulatory approvals from Chinese and U.S. officials. Bankruptcy court approval is also required. Hawker Beechcraft filed for bankruptcy protection in May.

The company said if the transaction is completed, Superior intends to maintain Hawker Beechcraft’s existing operations while putting “substantial capital” into the company saving thousands of American jobs.

The company employs roughly 4,700 people in Wichita.

Wichita city leaders issued a brief statement saying they would work diligently to protect the city’s investment and aviation jobs.

Mayor Carl Brewer said the City is working to gain a better understanding of how the proposed acquisition may impact the community.