Piper Aircraft, the Florida based makers of a variety of general aviation aircraft (such as the Warrior III, Arrow, Seminole, Seneca V, Matrix, Mirage and Meridian) that was founded in 1927, has reportedly been sold to Imprimis, an Asian based investment firm. Like other makers of general aviation aircraft, Piper has taken a substantial hit from the current economic downturn and has been forced to downsize its workforce and reduce the work week of remaining workers. However, Imprimis sees Asia as a long term growth market for Piper but reportedly still plans to keep its production facilities and headquarters in Florida.
Nevertheless, a blog entry on CaliforniaFlightSchool.com is already asking:
How long do you think until the new owner closes many of the under-performing product lines? Get out of Vero Beach in a hurry? Start making planes in China?
No doubt soon, if current economic conditions persists. However, at least Piper has been given a reprieve (at least for now) to continue making aircraft.