US company Textron acquiring Pipistrel

Ajdovščina – US industrial conglomerate Textron, the owner of the Beechcraft, Hawker, and Cessna brands, has signed a deal on the acquisition of the Slovenian maker of ultralight aircraft Pipistrel. Pipistrel founder and CEO Ivo Boscarol will remain a minority owner. The deal is worth EUR 218 million, according to financial information provider Thomson Reuters.

With Textron, Pipistrel will have access to greater resources, technical and regulatory expertise and a global aircraft sales and support network, enabling it to accelerate its development and certification of electric and hybrid electric aircraft, Pipistrel said on Thursday.

Textron, which has confirmed the deal, has committed to maintaining Pipistrel’s brand, headquarters, research and development, and manufacturing in Slovenia and Italy, while making additional investments in Pipistrel for the development and production of future products.

When the sale is closed, Textron plans to form a new business segment, Textron eAviation, focused on the development of sustainable aircraft, which will include Pipistrel.

Textron eAviation will be based in Wichita, Kansas.

Boscarol, Pipistrel’s founder and CEO, will remain a minority owner as well as chairman emeritus, consulting on future product plans and strategies for a two-year period.

The transaction is expected to close during the second quarter of 2022, subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals.

“Pipistrel puts Textron in a uniquely strong position to develop technologies for the sustainable aviation market and develop a variety of new aircraft to meet a wide range of customer missions,” said Textron chairman and CEO Scott Donnelly.

“Today’s announcement supports Textron’s long-term strategy to offer a family of sustainable aircraft for urban air mobility, general aviation, cargo and special mission roles,” he said, adding that “Pipistrel has been celebrated as one of the world’s most important and successful manufacturers of electric aircraft”.

“Under my 30-year leadership, Pipistrel’s team has achieved a unique prime position in personal, affordable, environmentally friendly and electric aviation. The trend and foundation for future projects have clearly been set,” said Boscarol.

The Ajdovščina-based Pipistrel, which employed 250 people in June 2020, posted EUR 32 million in total revenue in 2020 with record high net profit of EUR 4.5 million.

It has received many awards and won the Nasa Cafe Green Flight Challenge three times. In 2011, it received the Golden Order for Services from the Slovenian president for its contribution to the development of environment-friendly technology.

Apart from Pipistrel Aircraft, the group comprises R&D arm Pipistrel Vertical Solutions, production facility Pipistrel Italia, and Pipistrel Asia Pacific.