Urals Mining Buys Czech Planemaker

Urals Mining and Metals Co., the miner controlled by billionaire Iskander Makhmudov, has acquired a 51 percent stake in Czech aircraft manufacturer Aircraft Industries, the company said Monday.
UMMC said it bought the stake from Czech firm PAMCO, previously the sole owner of Aircraft Industries, as it plans to diversify into new businesses, including regional air services and short-range aircraft. It did not disclose the price.
“Light aircraft is a practically unexploited market,” UMMC chief executive Andrei Kozitsyn said in a statement.
“The domestic airline industry has concentrated on long- and mid-range projects, while planes produced by Aircraft Industries are effective over a distance of 500 to 600 kilometers,” he said. “This would allow passenger flights between, for example, Yekaterinburg and Chelyabinsk, Tyumen, Kurgan, Perm and Ufa.”
Aircraft Industries produces several small passenger planes, including the L-410/420.