Schweizer Aircraft Acquired By Sikorsky

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Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., of Stratford, Conn., announced on Thursday that it has agreed to acquire Schweizer Aircraft Corp., a family-owned company based in Elmira, N.Y., that produces sailplanes, light helicopters, agricultural airplanes, reconnaissance aircraft and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). "Schweizer Aircraft is a great strategic fit for Sikorsky, providing us with proven leadership, a highly skilled and dedicated workforce, and immediate access to the light helicopter and UAV markets," Sikorsky President Steve Finger said in a news release. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. The takeover, which has been approved by the leadership of both companies, is expected to be complete by late this year. "We have grown to the point where we can benefit from the increase in financial, technical and marketing resources that Sikorsky offers," said company President Paul Schweizer. Schweizer's 421 workers and management team are expected to remain in place after the acquisition.

Schweizer, which began operations in 1930, is the oldest privately owned aircraft manufacturer in the United States. The company has produced 2,160 sailplanes, 2,650 agricultural airplanes, more than 60 special-purpose fixed-wing aircraft and unmanned vehicles, and more than 900 helicopters. Schweizer manufactures three proprietary helicopters: the piston-powered Model 300C and 300CBi helicopters and the turbine-powered Model 333; two types of covert reconnaissance aircraft, the SA 2-37B and RU-38B; and the unmanned Fire Scout VTUAV air vehicle under subcontract to Northrop Grumman. Schweizer will operate as a wholly owned subsidiary of Sikorsky. Sikorsky is a subsidiary of United Technologies Corporation, of Hartford, Conn.