Cirrus Continues Global Push

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As the domestic aircraft market remains flat, manufacturers are looking offshore to bolster sales and Cirrus Aircraft's sales force is getting that message this week. The company's 65 sales executives are in Duluth for a week of meetings and since 35 of them cover other countries there's a global perspective to the meeting, punctuated by CEO Brent Wouters in his comments to the gathering. "I want to drive home the point that we are a global company today, and we need to think differently about how we operate in a world market," he's quoted as saying in a story in the Duluth News Tribune. Cirrus now sells airplanes in 50 countries and will get a presence in Argentina next.

Wouters also said that markets elsewhere may recover faster than in the U.S. and that the weak U.S. dollar is helping sell airplanes in foreign markets. In fact, there are some places that have been largely untouched by the recession. Steve Maltby, who represents Australasia, told the newspaper that Australia's economy remains buoyant on the strength of agricultural and resource exports. He predicts a good market for Cirrus's new single-engine jet. "It's perfect for Australia," Maltby said. "It's similar in size to the U.S., but the distance between population centers is quite large. You couldn't build a better aircraft for Australia."