Dallas-based IndUS Aviation, along with its Chinese partner IPI Technologies and private investors in China, are progressing towards the move of production of the Thorpedo Light Sport Aircraft to the new LuYangHu General Aviation Development Zone in Weinan, China.
“I just returned from China this week. While there, we continued the development plans to begin building aircraft in Weinan, Shaanxi Province, China later this year,” said Dr. Ram Pattisapu. “These facilities are being designed to enable us to build large numbers of aircraft, anticipating 100 units per year capacity within 18 months or so. It was great to see the ground at the new site.”
IndUS and IPI hope to have production on line by end of 2011, and increase steadily throughout 2012 to maximum capacity.
Hayden Malone, president of Sterling Flight Training of Jacksonville, Florida, and IndUS have begun discussions to open flight training institutions in different locations in China. With IndUS’ production of aircraft in China, and flight training avenues, the plan is to deliver some of the produced aircraft in China to these training institutions, while concurrently exporting aircraft to the US and other locations around the world.
The unprecedented partnership puts IndUS in a unique collaboration with the Chinese government and private industry in central China. They expect to begin building aircraft this year.
This business arrangement binds IndUS with Mr. Ning An, president of China’s IPI Information Technology and Dr. Yuanyang Gao, representing the Chinese city of Weinan. The partners will now operate a newly created company presently called ‘IndUS-IPI’. China’s less expensive labor force, plus that nation’s burgeoning interest in all things aviation, has attracted interest for aviation and aerospace companies. Other manufactures, including Boeing, Diamond Aircraft, Airbus, and recently, Teledyne Technologies, Inc. have established business operations there.
A reciprocal agreement involves equity positions between IndUS and IPI, with support of Weinan government. This unique collaboration between private industry in the US and China was made possible through the sponsorship of the Weinan City government.
IndUS Aviation joins Cessna Aircraft as the only two American aviation companies building light sport aircraft in China, however with a different and unique business model. “We will focus on building primary entry level aircraft in large numbers to meet the expected demand for such aircraft in India and China. With our new Chinese partners, we will develop the LSA market in Asia, and continue to oversee final assembly of Thorpedos in Dallas to support sales in North America”, Pattisapu said. Under the new agreement, IndUS will be responsible for all research and development, modifications and technical updates in the USA, with requisite FAA and international aviation agency approvals.