Business Up At Gulfstream

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Gulfstream says business is up and it's predicting continued slow recovery through the coming year. In a conference call to discuss its first quarter results of parent company General Dynamics, CEO Jay Johnson said Gulfstream, buoyed by 200 orders for its new G650 ultra-fast and ultra-long-range business jet, is in a solid position. "First quarter revenues are up 15 percent over the last quarter of 2009, and the G650 order book remains strong," he was quoted as saying by the Savannah Morning News. "Aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul demand is good." Johnson said the company expects to build 77 large and 14 midsized jets in 2010 against an order backlog of $18.5 billion.

The company has not reversed earlier recession-induced cuts and a production slowdown that resulted in the layoff of 1,200 workers but he's optimistic the market will turn. "I think we'll continue to see gradual improvement in the business aviation market this year," he said.