Italian manufacturer Piaggio Aerospace has requested to be placed into receivership after declaring itself insolvent.
The board of the company made a request with the Italian government on 22 November to enter an "extraordinary administration proceeding": a local process specifically aimed at industrial insolvency and company restructuring.
The move comes less than a year after Piaggio Aerospace – owned by Abu Dhabi investment house Mubadala – approved a strategic five-year industrial plan designed to secure its long-term financial and operational stability.
The strategy included a €255 million ($308 million) cash injection into the business by Mubadala, which took full ownership of the Villanova D’Albenga-headquartered venture in 2015. The plan also called for Mubadala to repurchase the company's bank debt, with the balance converted into equity "in support of Piaggio Aerospace’s balance sheet".
In a statement issued on 22 November, the board accepted that the restructuring plan has not worked. It says: "Despite the commitment and hard work of everyone at Piaggio Aerospace, as well as the significant financial contribution made over the years by the shareholder, the key fundamental assumptions of the restructuring plan approved in 2017 have not materialised."
The statement notes that the continued uncertainty and current market conditions mean the company is "no longer financially sustainable". The Piaggio Aerospace board has therefore taken the "difficult decision to submit the application to enter the extraordinary administration proceeding given the company's insolvency status", it says.
Piaggio is the developer of the P1HH HammerHead unmanned air vehicle and the P180 Avanti. Deliveries of the iconic twin-pusher – which emerged in the late 1980s and is now in its third iteration, the Evo – have fallen from their market peak of 30 aircraft in 2008 to just three in the nine months ending 30 September this year. One more example is scheduled for delivery during the fourth quarter.
The company had previously claimed to be gaining market share with the Evo, having secured a backlog of five aircraft following an intensive sales and marketing campaign.