Lilium raises additional US$119 million in share issue

By Business, eVTOLNo Comments

Lilium has revealed it has an additional US$119 million as a result of a share issue among the company’s existing investors as well as new participants. Partners involved in the issue include Honeywell and Aciturri, as well as LGT and its affiliated impact investor Lightrock, Tencent, and B. Riley Securities. Lilium’s new CEO, Klaus Roewe, and three additional board members, Barry Engle, David Wallerstein and Niklas Zennström, are also participating. Citigroup, B. Riley Securities and Piper Sandler are acting as placement agents for the offerings.

The offerings are expected to close on 22 November 2022. Lilium and its officers and directors have agreed to a lockup of 30 days, subject to customary exclusions.

Hindustan Aeronautics delivers 16th ALH MkIII to Indian Coast Guard

By Business, SARNo Comments

Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAI) has delivered the 16th ALH MkIII helicopter to the Indian Coast Guard (ICG). The aircraft is the last example in the ICG’s initial order.

Speaking at the delivery, ICG Director General V S Pathania said. “We are proud to be associated with HAL and happy to issue a Letter of Intent (LoI) for nine more helicopters. Despite COVID-19, HAL delivered all the helicopters in the shortest time with seamless production activities, and this allows us to strengthen India’s Maritime security.”

Mr C B Ananthakrishnan, CMD, HAL, said a unique feature of the contract has been the Performance Based Logistics (PBL) – the one-stop solution for the maintenance of these helicopters by HAL. “This will serve as a benchmark for all our future contracts and boost our resolve to work with private partners to speed up the work in the interest of all our customers and strengthen Make-in-India activities in the Defence eco-system,” he added.
Mr S Anbuvelan, CEO (Helicopter Complex), HAL, in his address, pointed out the major challenges in the execution of the contract that included integration of new systems sourced from foreign OEMs, conducting flight trials for certifications and overcoming disruptions in the supply chain due to lockdowns.

Vertical Aerospace announces Q3 figures

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eVTOL developer Vertical Aerospace Ltd has released its financial results for the third quarter ended 30 September 2022. The company has also issued a shareholder letter discussing its operating results and management commentary.

The operating results indicated a loss of GB£14 million, which compares with £8m for the same period last year. The company says that this reflects its increased activities, notably in the flight test programme and remains in line with its forecast.  The company also revealed that it has reserve funds of £145m on hand and has also secured an equity subscription line of credit with Nomura valued at a further £100m.

Bristow posts second quarter earnings

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Bristow Group have reported a net income attributable to the Company of USD16.5 m, or USD0.58 per diluted share, for its fiscal second quarter ended September 30, 2022 on operating revenues of USD299.4m. This compares with the preceding quarter where the figures were USD4.0m, or USD0.14 per diluted share, on operating revenues of USD294.1m. The earnings before interest, taxes and depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) were also improved compared with the previous quarter, USD42.7m vs USD39.0m respectively. However when special items like forex gains or losses are factored in the position is not as strong at USD33.9m in the Q2 versus USD37.1m in Q1. The company attributes the disparity to the impact of a weakening Norwegian Kroner and UK Pound against the US dollar during the period.

Commenting on the results Bristow Group CEO Chris Bradshaw said “The strengthening fundamentals in the offshore oil and gas market indicate that we are in the early innings of a multi-year growth cycle, International supply challenges and energy security concerns are expected to drive increased demand for services, while a tighter equipment market, constrained global labor force, and inflationary cost pressures should drive a material increase in rates.

Combined with new contract additions in our government services business and improved activity levels for our fixed wing business in Australia, the fundamentals for Bristow’s business are improving significantly. A strong U.S. dollar is unfortunately muting the full impact of these improvements in our calendar year 2023 financial outlook.”


FAA approval for Boost Systems’ insulated hoist equipment

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Boost Systems have been granted FAA approval. The company’s insulated suspension lines and flash rated harnesses are now FAA-approved when used with other manufacturers’ Bell 206L/407 and MD369 dual hook systems.

Utility HEC operators are now able to meet federal aviation requirements when using the Bell 206L/407 and MD369 Dual Hook System supplied by manufacturers other than Boost, by adding the FAA-approved BOOST Systems’ PCDS, including Insulated Suspension Lines and flash rated harnesses.

Jeff Yarnold, Boost Systems’ Vice President of Operations, said: “Utility operators using the Onboard HEC hook system were unable to perform energised work with a fully approved PCDS until now. Our approved insulated suspension lines and flash rated harnesses make it possible for all HEC utility operators using the Onboard System 206L/407 and MD369 dual hook to meet FAA requirements.”

Airbus Helicopters reports EBIT of €380 million for first nine months of 2022

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In the company’s autumn statement, Airbus has revealed that the Helicopters division has posted earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) of €380 million for the calendar year to September – up by €9 million compared with the same period in 2021.

The company says that the improvement has been driven by a combination of a “growth in services and a favourable mix in programmes”.  The statement goes on to say that the performance reflects non-recurring elements booked in the first quarter.

North American Helicopter places K-MAX order

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Kaman Air Vehicles have announced the receipt of a signed purchase agreement from North American Helicopter for a K-MAX®medium-to-heavy lift helicopter with delivery expected in the fourth quarter of 2022. “North American Helicopter has been a highly respected operator for more than 55 years and we appreciate the confidence they have placed in Kaman and the capabilities of the K-MAX®. Adding the proven external lift and precision capabilities of K-MAX® to North American Helicopter’s operations will enhance their operational services in support of the Electrical and Gas Utility sectors and the Department of Defense,” said Roger Wassmuth, Senior Director of Business Development.

“Adding K-MAX® to our fleet is an important step for expanding our overall external lift capabilities,” added Jessica Bailey, President of North American Helicopter. “Our future power line projects and firefighting support will benefit greatly from the increased lift capability of K-MAX®. Our strategic location in the Midwest near St. Louis, MO allows us to respond quickly to our customers’ needs throughout the United States, Canada and Caribbean.”

First production AW609 takes flight

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Last Thursday, the first production example of the AW609 made its maiden flight Leonardo have revealed. The aircraft (designated AC5) has begun flying in support of the flight test programme joining one US based and two Italian prototypes and and will be used to explore and expand the type’s mission capabilities as the test programme draws to it’s conclusion.

Three more examples of the type all destined for customer delivery are presently on the company’s final assembly line. Following completion of the flight test programme and certification AC5 will be retained by Leonardo for type development and customer demonstrations.




Turkish start-up Mavi Air orders four ACH130s

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Mavi Air CEO, Alex Sahni checks out the ACH130 at last year’s EUROPEAN ROTORS

Istanbul based start-up operator Mavi Air has placed an order with Airbus for four ACH130s and taken options on a further two aircraft.

The aircraft will be used in airport shuttle and sightseeing operations in the Istanbul region. Mavi Air began the shuttle operations last week using a H130 already owned by the operator. “Due to a sharp increase in inbound tourism, a helicopter shuttle service will bring real added value to Turkey’s ambitious growth plans” says Mavi Air founder Alex Sahni. “Our shuttle services will begin with Istanbul and with the delivery of our new helicopters we will grow our operations to numerous destinations in Turkey. The ACH130 offers a safe, quiet and comfortable flight that will ensure our clients’ demanding requirements are met. In the future we are aiming at introducing green technologies such as Sustainable Aviation Fuel and electric propulsion when they are available for commercial operations.”  



Switlik breaks ground on 20,000 sq ft factory expansion

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Switlik Survival Products has announced that it has broken ground on a 20,000 sq ft (1860 m2) extension to its Trenton New Jersey manufacturing facility. The company says that the expansion will enable it to broaden its product offerings as well as diversify into new markets. “We’re thrilled to get moving on this project which will ultimately provide the residents of Trenton and Hamilton with new job opportunities and help those employed continue succeeding. For 102 years Switlik has been saving lives worldwide, providing jobs locally.” – Stanley Switlik II, CEO. “The expansion is pivotal for us” adds Sarah Switlik, COO “it allows us a lot of opportunity as we look towards the next generation at Switlik.”