BEND Cessna Aircraft, of Wichita, Kan., took over operations at Columbia Aircraft Manufacturing in Bend last month after successfully bidding more than $26 million in a November bankruptcy court auction. The success of Cessna in acquiring Columbia was hardly a surprise, as it was the favored bidder even before most other interested buyers dropped out of the auction days before it was held. Cessna has said it will keep the 400 Columbia employees in Bend, transforming the facility into one of six Cessna manufacturing locations. Cessna says it plans to invest significantly in Bend, possibly increasing employment down the road.
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