EADS Socata Revenue Soars

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Sales of Socata's TBM 850 are up 35 percent compared with last year as the company pits the economy of its 320- ktas (at FL260) turboprop against a fledgling very light jet (VLJ) market and rides a 21 -percent rise in revenue. Socata aims to deliver 50 of the turboprop singles this year, with a current backlog of 40 aircraft. The company's coffers are bolstered by a freshly won contract to retrofit avionics for a fleet of Embraer Emb-110 Xingu at the French Military Air Transport Flight School. Socata last year increased production of subassemblies for other companies like Airbus, Dassault and Eurocopter by 13 percent. It has also extended for eight years its contract to maintain the TBM military aircraft fleet and announced a new technology development program for composite fuselage research.