March 17, 2015, c. Leeham Co.: Bombardier and air shows just don't get along.
In 2009, there was wide anticipation at the Paris Air Show that BBD would announce a deal with Qatar Airways for 20 CS300s. The contract was ready. Instead, Qatar ordered a combination of Airbus A319/320neos after the French government pressured the Qatari government to avoid giving the CS300 a major boost on French soil. Given how persnickety Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker later proved to be with Airbus, Boeing and Pratt & Whitney, Bombardier is probably lucky this deal collapsed.
But subsequent air shows proved no better for BBD. Expectations arose and were inevitably dashed.
One reason: under Canadian law, orders and even letters of intent and MOUs must be announced within 24 hours. But BBD just couldn't seem to make a sale. We've written several times about circumstances that went beyond BBD's ability to control events, but clearly there was something more fundamentally wrong that this year, at long last, is being addressed through executive changes and corporate restructuring.
What does this mean for BBD at the Paris Air Show this year?
Don't expect much in the way of orders.
Look for detailed information about the CSeries flight test performance and results.
CSeries will make a big appearance at the show.
The new executive team will be equally on display.