Bombardier has launched a push to regain market share in the Brazilian market by restoring a long-dormant alliance with the country's largest sales agent.

The Belo Horizonte-based Líder Aviação introduced the first Learjet aircraft in Brazil in 1968 and served as a sales agent until 1999, when the company switched to represent Raytheon Aircraft before it became Hawker Beechcraft.

The demise of Hawker-series production earlier this year as a result of bankruptcy left Líder free to search for new OEM partners.

Meanwhile, Bombardier had lost ground in the fast-growing Brazilian market, especially at the top-end of its business jet family. Over the last five years in the Latin American market, Gulfstream has shipped three times as many G550s as Bombardier delivered Global 6000s, and twice as many combined G450s and G500s as Bombardier's Global 5000.

"We are catching up very quickly," says Fabio Rebello, Bombardier's regional vice-president for Latin America. "We do expect Líder to help."

In addition to acting as a local sales agent, Líder has an extensive presence in the country as a maintenance operator, fleet manager and charter group.

Líder is now working to be approved as an authorised service centre for Bombardier aircraft, including the Global, Challenger and Learjet fleets. Líder also operates its own fleet of more than 100 general aviation aircraft, which opens the possibility of acquiring Bombardier aircraft to augment its fleet, says president Eduardo de Pereira Vaz.

At the same time, Líder is maintaining its status as the local sales agent for Beechraft's family of King Air turboprops and piston-powered Bonanzas and Barons.

Líder views the two product lines as complementary, allowing King Air customers to move up to Bombardier light or midsize jets over time, Vaz says.

Source: Flight International