Bell to sell helicopter program stake to AgustaWestland

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Flight Iinternational Online news 09:00GMT: Bell Helicopter and AgustaWestland have struck a deal over their joint venture, Bell Agusta Aerospace Company LLC, with Bell selling its 25 percent interest in the AB139 medium twin helicopter program to AgustaWestland. 

AgustaWestland will assume 100 percent ownership of all aspects of the AB139 program going forward. In return for its 25 percent interest, a joint statement by the two firms said Bell will receive payments to reflect its value in the program. Details of the deal have not been released and the move has yet to be subject to regulatory approval.

AgustaWestland plans now to increase its interests in the BA609 civil tiltrotor aircraft, which will remain within BAAC, from the original 25 percent to a maximum of 40 percent by increasing its investments during the development phase.

BAAC is a joint venture that markets and supports the BA609 civil tiltrotor, the world's first civil tiltrotor aircraft, which features extended range and speed compared to traditional VTOL aircraft.