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Thu, Oct 18, 2007

Textron Says Cessna Hauled In Over $1 Billion In Orders At NBAA

Tally Includes 13 Single-Engine Pistons... And Five LSAs?

Like a proud parent applauding their child for making the honor roll, Cessna parent-company Textron, Inc. tells ANN the planemaker ended the 2007 National Business Aviation Association convention in Atlanta last month with 178 new aircraft orders valued at more than $1 billion.

During the three-day event, Cessna took orders for 101 Citations, 59 Caravans, 13 single-engine pistons and five SkyCatchers. (And let's face it... anytime you can sell a light-sport aircraft in the shadow of multi-million-dollar Citation bizjets, you're probably doing something right -- Ed.) These orders were in addition to those announced at the opening-day press conference for 30 Citation Xs from XOJET and 30 Citation Mustangs from an unnamed European charter company.

"The significant aspects of this show were that we had tremendous success across the range of products - from SkyCatcher to Citation X -and that the international market continues to expand," said Roger Whyte, senior vice president, Sales and Marketing for Cessna. "I think this is strong proof the recent bullish forecasts on global business jet sales are right on target."

Sales for Citations ranged from Citation Mustangs to Citation Xs, but the most popular at NBAA were the CJ3 and the XLS+. Fifty-seven of the 101 Citation orders logged at the show, as well as those announced at the opening-day press conference, were included in the company's $11.9 billion September 30, 2007 backlog, while 44 will enter into backlog during the fourth quarter as contracts are completed.

Caravan sales also continue to be strong.As ANN reported, Cessna took in orders for 59 new planes at the event, on the heels of its announcement of the new Garmin G1000 new avionics suite for the Caravan, and an increase in annual production up to 120 aircraft.

Cessna also continued to gauge interest in its Large Cabin Concept aircraft on display at the company's exhibit. Cessna expects to make a decision on whether to proceed with the project in early 2008.

"All indications point to a strong business case for this new model, which would be our largest aircraft in the Citation family," Whyte said.

FMI: www.cessna.com

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