Gulfstream, first of the business jet manufacturers to report half-year results, saw sales and orders increase and is planning a “measured” increase in production next year. Figures released by parent company General Dynamics show revenues at Gulfstream rose by almost 15% over the first six months of last year.

Other business jet manufacturers are expected to post similar gains as they report their first-half results. Gulfstream also saw a quarter-over-quarter increase in sales as the mix of large business jets and lower-margin mid-size aircraft improved. The company delivered 21 green aircraft in the second quarter (15 large and six mid-size), for a total of 41 (29 of them large aircraft) in the first six months – up from 37 in the same period last year.

Deliveries of completed aircraft were also up from a year earlier, from 18 to 22 for the second quarter and from 30 to 37 for the first six months.

Gulfstream’s “book-to-bill” ratio was 1.4:1 in dollar terms in the second quarter – the fourth consecutive quarter when the ratio of orders to sales was greater than one – and it is “raising production rates in a measured way”, says GD chief executive Nick Chabraja. Production in 2006 will be “somewhat higher” than this year, with first-half deliveries already spoken for, he says.

From a high of 101 aircraft in 2001, after it acquired Galaxy Aerospace, Gulfstream’s green deliveries fell to 74 in 2003 before increasing to 78 last year. Deliveries of around 90 aircraft are planned for this year.


Source: Flight International