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GA News

The latest news from light aviation

Eclipse: the final chapter?

First Posted: Wed 25 Feb 2009

Eclipse Aviation, the troubled manufacturer of the Eclipse 500 VLJ (Very Light Jet) has moved from Chapter 11 to Chapter 7 liquidation, a much more final state of bankruptcy.

The company sent a memo yesterday to employees, thanking them for their 'tenacity and perseverance', but saying that 'The furlough converted to a layoff effective Thursday, February 19, 2009.' It adds that workers will not be paid the paycheck due on March 5, nor any vacation pay. Times have been set aside for workers to visit the plant and pick up their personal effects.

The memo ends with the words "We gave it one heck of a try. We are sorry that it came to this today."

Eclipse entered Chapter 11 bankruptcy last year. Earlier this year a deal was agreed by the courts in which the company would be bought by ETIRC's subsidiary EclipseJet, but according to the memo "Despite the efforts of many people at EclipseJet Aviation and ETIRC to obtain necessary funding to close the purchase of the assets of Eclipse Aviation, the closing of the sale transaction has stalled and our company is out of time and money."

The Eclipse 500 was the first VLJ to be delivered to customers. Over 250 aircraft have been delivered to customers, with 1,000 orders on the books.

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