Flashback: Piaggio heading for bankruptcy protection

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With AIN Media Group’s Aviation International News and its predecessor Aviation Convention News celebrating the 50th year publication continues this year, the AIN editorial staff scours the archives each month to bring readers some interesting events that have been covered over the past half-century.

REWIND: (AIN January 1, 1995 p.28) Italian aircraft manufacturer Piaggio – maker of the P.180 twin-push utility transport – was granted bankruptcy protection and additional government financial support in a November 21 court ruling from his hometown of Genoa. The court ruled that the company could be brought back to self-sufficiency under Italy’s “Prodi” bankruptcy law, which allows government support and legal protection from creditors for companies deemed to be of strategic importance to the national economy.

FAST FORWARD: For Piaggio, this bankruptcy was the first in a turbulent existence for the aircraft manufacturer. It has changed hands several times over the past 27 years, but it is perhaps unlikely, as other OEMs have fallen by the wayside, that it still exists as a manufacturer. Since 2018, the company has languished in an extraordinary receivership under a government-appointed commissioner, as it continues to search for a qualified buyer. Despite all these upheavals, Piaggio continued the aircraft’s development with the Avanti Evo, the third generation of the P.180, entering service in 2015 and an unmanned version dubbed the Hammerhead making its first flight in 2018. Piaggio has recorded 152 million euros in sales last year and has an order book of 500 million euros.

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