Industry News

November 2011 Issue

American Champion: State of the Art Classics

For as bad as the aviation boom-bust cycle is for companies that make airplanes, it’s just as bad for the people who buy them. The euphoria that goes with pocketing the keys to a brand new airplane has to be tempered by the reality that the company that built it maybe teetering toward bankruptcy. Is there a better business plan, one that envisions modest production and flexible size and that can survive the test of the worst economic downturns? There are at least a couple of examples that suggest this can work. The family-owned Maule Air is one, shipping 30 or 40 airplanes a year to Cessna’s 500, but lately a lot less.

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