Draken International Signs Historic Agreement with Aero Vodochody & Czech Republic Ministry of Defense
Draken International has announced a historic agreement with Czech aircraft manufacturer Aero Vodochody and the Czech Republic Ministry of Defense. The agreement is a multi-faceted deal that includes both a significant acquisition of aircraft as well as a long-term strategic partnership.
The first aspect of the deal is the purchase and regeneration of up to 28 Aero L-159E ALCA fighter aircraft. These aircraft, which include some unique modifications, will represent the ultimate balance between low operational costs, high performance and, most importantly, sophisticated 4th generation sensor capabilities.
Draken International CEO Jared Isaacman states, “This acquisition has been negotiated over the last 18 months and reflects the very finest in cooperation between the American and Czech Republic defense industries. These aircraft, in addition to Draken’s vast existing fleet, will be at the forefront of the advanced commercial air services industry in the United States and for our allies abroad.”
In addition to the acquisition of the L-159E aircraft, Draken International and Aero Vodochody are pleased to announce a historic strategic partnership. This relationship includes the framework for the first Aero Vodochody approved maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) operation at Draken International’s Lakeland, FL facility. Draken will also exclusively market the L-159 and future derivatives to customers in North and South American as well as undertake a portion of the aircraft manufacturing process in the United States. Additional services such as flight testing, training, avionics and tactical system integration will also be undertaken by Draken International. This historic partnership represents the first time Aero Vodochody and its successful series of aircraft will be marketed, assembled and completely supported outside of the Czech Republic.
The Aero L-159E aircraft will complement Draken’s existing fleet and augment the company’s ability to provide a cost-effective contract air services solution to support the US military and its allies. The cost savings available to militaries across the globe by utilizing advanced commercial air services is overwhelming. Prior to Draken’s founding, the application of contract air services was limited to a handful of Lear Jets and Korean War vintage aircraft performing target towing and basic electronic warfare mission sets. Draken has set a new standard in commercial air services by delivering an extensive fleet of aircraft with 4th generation capabilities, flown by world-class, highly-trained pilots and offered at a significant cost-savings over the use of military assets. To date, the commercial air services industry has been limited to the United States, Canada, Germany and a few other regional markets. As a component of the overall strategic partnership between Draken International and Aero Vodochody, these two companies will endeavor to jointly market cost effective advanced commercial air services throughout Europe.