Simon Caldecott has been appointed the new interim president and CEO of Piper Aircraft, Inc., effective immediately. One of his first actions was to call for a review of the PiperJet Altaire program.
Caldecott joined Piper in 2009 and is the former Vice President of Operations responsible for Manufacturing Operations, Manufacturing Engineering, Quality and Supply Chain. Caldecott replaces Geoff Berger, who joined as the previous interim CEO in mid-2010. Berger is also managing director of Imprimis, a corporate finance and investment management firm located in Singapore and Brunei Darussalam, that acquired Piper in 2009.
“I would like to thank Geoff Berger for his outstanding service to Piper throughout his time here. His hard work and contributions have seen us through many important changes that have helped continue a great tradition of precision manufacturing and delivering best-in-class airplanes,” Caldecott said.
Caldecott also indicated that Executive Vice President Randy Groom has left the company. “I would also like to thank Randy Groom for many contributions to our globalization efforts and his excellent leadership of our customer-facing functions,” he said.
Groom, a previous Hawker Beechcraft executive, joined Piper in April 2010. Since then he has been the face of the company at media events.
Caldecott said the company’s new executive team “is dedicated to moving Piper forward. We will increase focus on the company’s vertical integration manufacturing model, along with continuous product improvements and thoughtful investments in our business and training aircraft to further recent growth gains.”
Deliveries of Piper’s piston and turboprop powered aircraft have increased quarter over quarter and year over year as the company’s business and training aircraft continue to outperform the marketplace in their aircraft categories, company officials said.
“While the company continues to achieve internal financial and delivery targets for the existing turboprop and piston product lines, we have initiated a review of the Altaire business jet development program. This is being undertaken to ensure the company is properly aligning business goals and light jet market forecasts with investment strategies and economic forecasts,” Caldecott said. The company will announce the conclusion of this review to employees and the industry as soon as possible, he added.
With more than 37 years in aviation, Caldecott has also worked for Raytheon Aircraft and Hawker Beechcraft. His education includes studies in Aeronautical Engineering in Wales and programs in Business Management at the London School of Business and the Chicago Graduate School of Business. He also worked as a design engineer for British Aerospace on development of the Hawker mid-size business jet, rising to be responsible for manufacturing, assembly, flight testing and completion of Hawkers. He also completed Lean Training with Kawasaki, which included touring Japanese manufacturing facilities to better understand how Lean is successfully applied across products from automotive to aerospace.
For more information: Piper.com