Larry Flynn, President, Gulfstream
February 21, 2014
Thank you for joining us this morning. I would especially like to thank Chairman Hochberg, AIA President and CEO Marion Blakey, Senator Isakson and Representative Kingston for being here to help us recognize this important milestone in the history of the Export-Import Bank.
On behalf of the more than 14,000 Gulfstream employees around the world, I want to thank Ex-Im for its efforts to help companies like Gulfstream grow, even under challenging market conditions.
Ex-Im is crucially important to Gulfstream because exports are a large part of our business. You couldn’t say that when we started here in Savannah in 1967 – or even 30 years later. But you can now.
Ten years ago, 18 percent of the Gulfstream fleet was outside of the United States. Now, about 35 percent of the fleet – that’s more than 750 aircraft – is based outside of the country.
Most of that international growth has happened over the last six years – in places such as China, Russia and Brazil.
And it’s still going strong.
Approximately 60 percent of our nearly 14 billion dollar backlog is international. We used to be a Savannah-based company that did some business internationally. Today, we are an international company that is proud to be based in Savannah.
Gulfstream would not be as successful as we’ve been without the support of Ex-Im. The Bank’s ability to secure financing for many of our overseas customers has put us on a level playing field with our competitors.
The best news of all is that the increase in international sales has led to more jobs here in the U.S. In 2010, we announced that we would add 1,000 jobs in Savannah over a seven-year period. I’m proud to say that a little over three years later, we’ve added not 1,000, not 2,000 – but 2,500 jobs.
We could not have done this without the tremendous support of many, including Ex-Im Bank, the Aerospace Industries Association and our elected officials.
And for that, I thank you.