Hawker Beechcraft Sees Increased Demand for Special Mission Aircraft in International Markets

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New analysis from Hawker Beechcraft Corporation (HBC) reveals that over the past five years, markets outside of the United States account for more than two-thirds (68 percent) of its special mission aircraft sales.

HBC, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of special mission aircraft, reveals that its prime market outside of the U.S. is the Europe/Middle East and Africa region, which accounted for 34 percent of sales between 2007 and 2011, followed by the Asia/Pacific region at 26 percent and Latin America with 7 percent.

“The market for special mission aircraft is truly global,” said Jay Gibson, vice president, Special Missions. “As one of the largest manufacturers of special mission aircraft, we are in a very strong position to take advantage of the increased demand we expect to see from emerging markets. This means we are not reliant on any one geographic market for our sales.” 

HBC’s special mission offerings encompass a wide range of capabilities including aerial survey, air ambulance, flight inspection, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR), maritime patrol, training and utility/transport. The market for many of the company’s mission offerings continues to grow as mission sensors become smaller, lighter, more capable and more affordable.

Outside the U.S., special mission aircraft are most commonly purchased to perform air ambulance missions, which account for 27 percent of deliveries in the last five years with nearly half (45 percent) going to the Asia/Pacific region and another 45 percent going to countries in Europe/Middle East and Africa. Trainer aircraft are the second largest category, accounting for 19 percent of deliveries, with 56 percent going to the Asia/Pacific region and 44 percent going to Europe/Middle East and Africa.

Of the newer uses, weather modification – such as cloud seeding where foreign elements are introduced into the atmosphere to enhance precipitation – is particularly popular in the Middle East. 

Furthermore, Asia/Pacific has accounted for 60 percent of all air calibration/flight inspection aircraft deliveries over the past five years. HBC predicts that demand for aircraft to fulfil these missions in Asia and other emerging economies will only increase as air travel continues to grow in popularity1. 

“In particular, we expect to see an increase in demand for ISR globally and maritime surveillance aircraft in Africa and Latin America as countries there look to increasingly secure their borders – both on land and at sea,” Gibson said. “In Asia, improvements in aviation infrastructure and safety are driving demand for air calibration capabilities, and we expect to see this trend also extend into Africa and Latin America over the next few years.”

Hawker Beechcraft Corporation is a world-leading manufacturer of business, special mission, light attack and trainer aircraft – 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 Little Rock, Ark.; Chester, England, U.K.; and Chihuahua, Mexico. The company leads the industry with a global network of more than 100 factory-owned and authorized service centers. For more information, visit www.hawkerbeechcraft.com.

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