Hawker Sees Strong Growth in Turkish Business-Jet Demand

Hawker Beechcraft Corp., the private- jet manufacturer partly owned by Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS), predicts “strong” long-term growth in the Turkish business aviation industry after gains in both flights and jet deliveries.

Business-aircraft shipments to Turkey gained six-fold to 67 in the four years from 2007 through 2011, compared with 11 in the four years through 2006, the Wichita, Kansas-based company said in an e-mailed statement today. That compared with a three- fold jump to 25 deliveries in Poland, a three-fold rise to 100 in China and a doubling to 82 jets in Russia, Hawker said.

“Turkey benefits from its unique geographical situation, straddling both Europe and Asia, and is fast becoming a hub for business travel,” said Sean McGeough, the company’s president for the European, Middle Eastern, African and Asian Pacific regions.

Turkey’s business flights increased 4 percent to an average of 105 a day in the first half of this year compared to a year earlier, Hawker Beechcraft said. Business flights don’t include commercial flights by national flag carriers or other airlines.

The company said it’s the leader in the Turkish business- jet market with a 31 percent share.

“Turkish businesses are able to deal with the more established Western markets and are also profiting from the high growth rates being experienced in the Middle East and Asian economies,” McGeough said.

Hawker, owned by Goldman and Onex Corp. (OCX), filed for Chapter 11 protection in May, citing lower demand for private jets after the recession and curbs on U.S. defense spending. The manufacturer plans to emerge from bankruptcy as a stand-alone company after its $1.79 billion sale to Superior Aviation Beijing Co. collapsed last month.

To contact the reporter on this story: Ercan Ersoy in Istanbul at eersoy@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Benedikt Kammel at bkammel@bloomberg.net

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