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The coronavirus pandemic has had double-edged effects on Tamarack, driving new orders on the one hand while delaying the firm’s bid to put Chapter 11 bankruptcy behind it on the other. President Jacob Klinginsmith, in a telephone interview, said that the last major issue in the bankruptcy case has been resolved: The company’s insurance provider, he said, has agreed (following a long delay and various extensions in the case) to pay claims by aircraft owners arising from the May 2019 grounding of 97 Cessna Citation jets with Tamarack’s active load-alleviation system (ATLAS) winglets installed.
The company ultimately made a case to regulators and the public that the specific incidents that led to the grounding of the fleet were unrelated to ATLAS; however, the company was already in federal bankruptcy court by the time the FAA approved returning ATLAS-equipped aircraft to service in July 2019.
“We’re excited to finalize that” bankruptcy case, Klinginsmith said, noting that the company expects to conclude the court proceedings with all of its creditors, shareholders, and customers “intact, which is unusual … Ideally, we’d be out in October, but it’s really out of our hands.”
Federal court records indicate the case is indeed nearing resolution. Tamarack’s plan to reorganize and emerge from Chapter 11 had been approved by the time it briefed the media at the National Business Aviation Association convention in October 2019, at which point the company hoped to have the case concluded by the end of the year. The pandemic has delayed that progress, Klinginsmith said. “I’m looking forward to having it behind us, but we’re not letting it slow us down.”
The company announced in a recent news release that the office space in Sandpoint has been tripled and the firm is acquiring a third hangar, part of a recent expansion to accommodate demand for ATLAS installations on Cessna Citations, and for versions yet to be approved for other aircraft models. The company has recently hired new sales staff, and has engineering jobs posted that Klinginsmith said will be tasked with expanding the list of 30 patents, and eight Citation variants for which supplemental type certificates have already been granted. Klinginsmith said expanding to other aircraft models has always been the plan, though he declined to specify which aircraft might be next in line to get the ATLAS winglets, which dramatically reduce fuel consumption and increase useful load.
“Last year, we scaled
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