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Aviace Drops Eclipse Lawsuit

By Andrew Webb
Journal Staff Writer
    A Swiss startup company that alleged Eclipse Aviation illegally canceled delivery of its planes has dropped its lawsuit against the Albuquerque jet maker.
    Aviace, one of Eclipse's first big customers, sued the jet developer in late September, alleging Eclipse bumped its first order further down the production line, then later canceled it for fees Aviace claimed it did not owe.
    Aviace requested Eclipse either reinstate its delivery schedule, or pay unspecified compensatory and punitive damages. It also sought a preliminary injunction barring Eclipse from reassigning any of its preordered jets to other customers.
    Aviace, through its local attorneys, filed a motion to dismiss the suit Monday.
    In denying Aviace's application for the injunction last week, U.S. District Court Judge Christina Armijo wrote that Aviace, not Eclipse, had incorrectly interpreted the terms of a 2002 agreement between the companies.
    Aviace did, in fact, owe the disputed $634,000 deposit under the terms of the contract, she wrote.
    Additionally, Armijo wrote that Aviace had changed its business plan from a charter and fractional jet program to one that called for selling the earliest-delivered planes to other customers for higher prices— which was not part of its original contract with Eclipse.
    "Aviace has not shown a substantial likelihood of prevailing on the merits of any of its claims," Armijo wrote.