Gulfstream Aerospace soared to record financial results in 1997 and expects the trend to continue as production ramps up for the ultra long range GV business jet.

The corporation's sales virtually doubled over the year, reaching $1.9 billion, with deliveries of the GV climbing to 29 aircraft, alongside 22 GIV-SPS. In 1996, Gulfstream had counted 27 deliveries, including only the first three GVs.

"We are co-producing GIVs and GVs, and are now well ahead of our target to increase annual production to 60 aircraft by 1999," says chairman Teddy Forstmann.

Gulfstream is now beginning to work off some of the order backlog built up during the past two years as the GV sales campaign took off. That left the backlog standing at 94 aircraft, worth about $3.1 billion. By the end of 1997, the backlog declined marginally, to $2.8 billion for 88 aircraft, including 49 GVs. On these figures, the company netted 45 new orders in 1997, compared with 45 in 1996.

Gulfstream's net profits also soared in 1997, reaching $243 million (after a $65 million tax gain) and are expected to stay above the $200 million this year. Profits had ended 1996 at $47 million.

Source: Flight International