Thu, Feb 19, 2009
The Ailing Economy Continues To Plague The Aviation
At this week's GAMA
Annual Industry Review & Market Outlook Briefing, it was
obvious to everyone in the briefing room that the positive spirit
and outlook enjoyed in year's past would not be seen, again, for
some time. The economic downturn/collapse/recession/mess is having
a harsh affect on the aviation community... from the small-town FBO
up through the largest aircraft manufacturers.
not-unexpected news of the mass furloughs at what's left of
Eclipse Aviation, ANN has learned that Cirrus Aircraft
is continuing to refine their survival plan to not only deal with
the harshness of the economy but to try and maintain a direction
for future growth and product development... but it means that a
sharp knife has to be used to cut away at anything that 'isn't
absolutely necessary right now.'
Cirrus CEO, Brent Wouters, has confirmed directly to ANN that
additional layoffs are taking place today on a number of areas at
the company. Wouters emphasizes that the cuts are in areas that are
currently not required for the levels of piston production needed
to meet existing demand, and while some cuts have taken place in
the SJ50 jet development side of the business, that the cuts are in
staffing that had been supporting the development of the flying
prototype and will not be needed to move the program forward to
certification in the next few years.
Following his morning appearance, today, on the Fox Business
Network, Wouters noted that, "Cirrus is increasing its focus on the
jet... and shifting resources from the piston projects into the jet
Wouters added that, "Cirrus doesn't need as many technical
resources now that the program has shifted from the prototype build
and test phase, to the detailed airframe and systems design phase.
Resource changes do not impact the jet timeline and progress, and
Cirrus is focusing its personnel or financial resources in this
economy on the jet program."
Specifics about the number of personnel affected were still
being collected as this story was being compiled. ANN expects to
have more info shortly...
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