BREMEN, Germany, August 28, 2009 – Cessna Aircraft Company, a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company, announced that Atlas Air Service AG, its Citation Authorized Sales Representative in Germany, is today opening a Citation Service Center at Bremen Airport (BRE/EDDW).
The €10.5m ($14.8m) facility, which took a year to build, is one of the largest Authorized Citation Service Centers in Europe and will help meet the needs of the region's ever-growing Citation fleet.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Michael Laux, managing director at Atlas, said: "Our investment underlines our commitment to taking care of customers throughout the lifetime of their aircraft. Given the rapid growth of Europe's Citation fleet, this facility is three times larger than our former Bremen service center. We can now accommodate up to 12 Citations simultaneously in an advanced, 4,000-square meter facility (43,000 square feet) that also includes office space, a representative sales office and an automated, computer-controlled spare parts facility with twice the capacity of its predecessor.
"We're really taking advantage of the latest technology," said Laux of the new parts operation. "It's faster and more efficient than our previous operation, which means better and quicker service for customers."
More than 500 people attended today's opening ceremony, including Mark Paolucci, Cessna's senior vice president of Customer Service; Roger Whyte, Cessna's senior vice president of Sales and Marketing; Trevor Esling, Cessna's vice president of International Sales; 250 Cessna customers; and 120 Atlas workers with their families.
"Dependability is central to the Citation experience and at Cessna, we have always been proud of our customer support. This new center takes the Citation customer service offering in Europe, already wide-ranging and high-quality, to an even greater level," Paolucci said.
"This impressive new facility will help ensure that customers receive higher levels of care and that our customers' maintenance time will be reduced by more maintenance availability. Potential future customers will be impressed too and so, with its representative sales office, this center will boost our sales operation in Germany, which is already the largest market in the European Union for Citation aircraft," said Whyte.
"Bremen is the ideal location for this center," said Laux. "Unlike major hubs, the airport welcomes executive aviation and is an affordable option. Furthermore, the airport is only 10 minutes from the downtown city."
Atlas Air Service delivered over 50 Citations to European customers in 2007 and 2008. The company also operates Cessna service centers in Germany at Paderborn and Ganderkesee.
Based on unit sales, Cessna Aircraft Company is the world's largest manufacturer of general aviation airplanes. In 2008, Cessna delivered 1,301 aircraft, including 467 Citation business jets, and reported revenues of about $5.662 billion. Cessna has a backlog of $13 billion as of March 31, 2009. Since the company was originally established in 1927, some 192,000 Cessna airplanes have been delivered around the world, including more than 5,700 Citations, making it the largest fleet of business jets in the world. More information about Cessna Aircraft Company is available at www.cessna.com.