Van’s Aircraft in Financial Stress

In an announcement posted on Van’s website Friday (Oct. 27), founder and principle designer Dick VanGrunsven cited a serious cash flow situation that will cause shipment delays and the suspension of kit orders, refunds and even factory tours and demo flights.

In a video recording posted alongside the announcement, VanGrunsven mentioned the pandemic and how it affected operational changes and supply chains during a time when orders were actually increasing.

VanGrunsven also blamed the use of inferior primer paint by an overseas contractor for causing corrosion on some aluminum parts, leading to the scrapping “of a large number of kits.” The company also blames the outsourcing of the manufacture of some aluminum parts as a time-saving measure. These parts were to be laser-cut as opposed to the company’s traditional method of having them CNC-punched (Computer Numerical Control). Some users of these parts then reported substandard quality, though Van’s still claims they met the company’s standards.

“We are confident we can work through this situation,” said VanGrunsven. “Beginning today, Van’s is going to spend the next few weeks performing a focussed internal assessment.”

The company hopes to have the “assessment” completed by mid-November and predicts that prices will likely have to be increased.

View the video featured in this week’s newsletter for Dick VanGrunsven’s video message to his customers.