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MEBA: Emivest Aerospace sunsets with net sum zero

UAE-controlled Emivest Aerospace is likely to go to auction in January with nearly equal part assets and debt: $80 million to $77 million, respectively.

The net result, stated in bankruptcy court documents, could result in a relatively low-cost buy-in for one of the many companies San Antonio-based Emivest says are interested in purchasing the production and tooling for the SJ30 business jet.

The planned January auction, pending court approval in late December, is the latest chapter in a troubled deployment for the Williams International-powered twinjet.

Dubai-based Emirates Investment & Development (Emivest) bought 80% of the company from Sino-Swearingen Aircraft in 2008 and created Emivest Aerospace to produce the aircraft. Sales were managed at the company's home base in the USA and by Action Aviation in Europe and the Middle East.

Besieged by the downturn in the light jet sector, Emivest ultimately delivered only two aircraft, although it reports five years of backlog. In 2008, the company started with orders for more than 300 of the $7.5 million twinjets, 159 from the SJ30's largest distributor, UK-based Action Aviation. Sino-Swearingen had previously delivered two aircraft.

Emivest filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in October, asking the court to sell the company before $4 million in debtor-in-possession financing is to run out in February.

The company says it has been in contact with "as many as 15 potential purchasers or long-term investors, many of which have expressed a genuine interest" in purchasing the assets, and that it had planned to reach out to more than 100 other potential purchasers before the sale.

Action Aviation is now a member of a group of unsecured debtors, including Israeli Aerospace Industries (producer of seats for the passenger cabin) that will have input on any possible sale. Emivest lists its secured debt as $47 million and unsecured debt as $30 million.

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