November 4, 2008
By Alton K. Marsh
Not long after CEO Jim Schuster warned of difficult times ahead, he has sent a letter to employees warning that 5 percent of the company’s 9,800 employees worldwide will be laid off, according to reports by the Associated Press and The Wichita Eagle.
The cuts affect both hourly and salaried workers, and will be made soon. The company has just settled a strike that resulted in fewer deliveries than expected and a third-quarter reduction in revenue of $87.7 million, compared to the same quarter of 2007.
The Wichita Eagle reported that Hawker Beechcraft is scaling back its forecasts and market expectations to reflect the “…uncertainty emerging worldwide.” The company will also build cash reserves, reduce inventory, defer capital spending, and eliminate employees found to be “underachievers.”
AOPA Pilot Senior Editor Alton Marsh has been a pilot since 1970 and has an airline transport pilot certificate and instrument and multiengine flight instructor certificates, aerobatic training, and a commercial seaplane certificate.
AOPA expressed concern in a meeting with town officials from East Hampton, New York, that restrictions proposed to curb airport noise “overwhelmingly” generated by transient commercial flights would unfairly burden traditional airport users.
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