UPDATE – this statement has just been released by ATG:
“ATG, with the help from a Wall Street banking institution, has been seeking funding to continue its Javelin high performance business jet and military trainer for the past 12 months. Due to circumstances beyond ATG’s control, it is unlikely that adequate funding can be secured in a timely manner. ATG has therefore decided to halt development of the Javelin at this time. Further action will be decided upon after proper communication with our strategic business partner.”
The Denver Post is reporting that Aviation Technology Group – the Denver-based developer of the Javelin two-seat very light jet – has sent most of its employees home as it makes a last-ditch effort to find funding. The Post says ATG plans to meet with strategic partner Israel Aerospace Industries this week after an effort to raise $200 million was unsuccessful.
Mortality rates are high among general-aviation startups, and particularly among VLJ hopefuls: flightless failures include the Avocet Projet (designed by IAI) and the Safire Jet. Even Eclipse, with its aircraft successfully certificated, is on the hunt for more cash after falling far short of its first-year delivery target because of problems ramping up production.
ATG has always looked risky because it is targeting a narrow subset of the VLJ market – those buyers wanting a fighter-like two-seater they can pilot themselves. Its apparent advantage has been the potential market for the Javelin as a military trainer – hence IAI’s involvement. But that has always been an unpredictable and competitive market – ask Pilatus etc.