Officials with Beaudet Aviation, a subsidiary of JCB Aero located in France, announced Wednesday (Sept. 17) plans to invest $2.5 million in a Little Rock operation and initially create 75 jobs.
The new operation, located adjacent to the Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport, will provide cabin interiors for the Dassault Falcon jet operations nearby. According to the Arkansas Economic Development Commission, Beaudet plans to expand gradually and add new shops to the production center, and in the long run build its own hangar to be able to accommodate wide bodies up to B777.
“We wanted to be nearer to our American customers and especially to Dassault Falcon Jet and I admit I am very proud that Beaudet Aviation has been selected to take part in the completion of the Falcons Jet series,” said Jean-Claude Beaudet, chairman of JCB Aero. “In the long run, we would like to create the exact duplication of the company based in France or even bigger: being in America sort of gives you wings and you feel like you are going to fly. In a few years’ time, Beaudet Aviation would like to offer the widest range in terms of cabins and systems for VIP Aircraft and Commercial Airlines and become completely autonomous, provide total completion in one place and even expand new facilities adjacent to the airport.”
Dassault Falcon Jet broke ground earlier this month on a $60 million expansion of its Arkansas completion facility to accommodate the company’s two new aircraft models.
“Aviation is Arkansas’s leading export, and Beaudet Aviation now increases that sector’s strong momentum with its arrival in Little Rock,” Gov. Mike Beebe said in the AEDC statement. “With the confidence that our aviation companies place in Arkansas, we have become an ideal destination for important suppliers like Beaudet.”
Based near Toulouse, France, JCB Aero was founded in 1987 by Jean Claude Beaudet. The company focuses its aircraft interiors on cabin reconfiguration, major/minor modifications, in-flight entertainment upgrades, and cabin refurbishment.