Airbus 2019 results hit by A320neo delivery delays

By Bjorn Fehrm 

October 30, 2018, © Leeham News: Airbus announced 3Q 2019 results today. Revenue and profits for the first nine months were up from last year but the company is still wrestling with delivery problems for A320neos from its Hamburg factories. The delays during the first nine months cannot be caught up and the delivery guidance for 2019 is now 860 aircraft instead of 880-890.

Guided free cash flow will suffer as a result while profits for the year are guided unchanged as the first nine months delivered healthy profits.

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Faury looks to transform Airbus

  • Guillaume Faury has been the chief executive officer of Airbus Group since April 1. In this exclusive interview, he looks back on his first six months and ahead for the future of the company. This is part 1 of two parts. Part 2 will appear soon.

Guillaume Faury

Oct. 30, 2019, © Leeham News: Guillaume Faury assumed his office as chief executive officer of the Airbus Group at a time when the company was trying to emerge from years-long scandals over bribery and corruption probes and the industry was only beginning to reel from the grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX.

Now, he’s focused on guiding Airbus in the future through a series of transformations to put the scandals behind the company, change production for the future and prepare for new airplanes that inevitably must be designed.

Becoming CEO

Faury’s been with Airbus for 20 years, surrounding a four-year stint with Peugeot from 2009-2013 as EVPO of Research and Development. He was named president of Airbus Commercial in February 2018. He previously was president and CEO of Airbus Helicopters from 2013-2018.

He succeeded CEO Tom Enders, who was not going to be given another term as part of the fallout of the numerous government investigations into past practices at Airbus involving third parties for aircraft sales, bribery and corruption allegations.

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Although Enders and CFO Harald Wilhelm initiated the probes and reported the problems to the governments, they along with many others had to go as Airbus tried to limit the damage.

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Boeing’s Muilenburg opening statement to the US House

Dennis Muilenburg

Oct. 29, 2019: Having completed his appearance before the US Senate today, Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg will appear before the US House tomorrow.

Here is his opening statement: Opening Statement-10-30.

His appearance before the Senate was about as expected. Most Senators seemed more interested in their five minutes of TV time than trying to get at answers and determine a path forward.

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) was an exception, as was Sen. John Tester (D-MT). Cruz, a former prosecutor, pressed Muilenburg on his ignorance of key documents and the lack of communication with key employees.

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Congress is accountable in Boeing MAX crisis, too

By Scott Hamilton

Commentary

Dennis Muilenburg

When Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg appears before the US Senate today and the US House tomorrow, he needs to be sure the company owns up to its role in the Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines 737 MAX crashes.

The advance copy of the opening statement to the Senate, released yesterday, heads in this direction.

But if Congress truly wants to understand how 346 people died and certification of the MCAS and MAX evolved, it damn well better hold the Federal Aviation Administration accountable, too.

There is little doubt Congress will put Boeing and the FAA through the meat grinder.

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Muilenburg opening statement to Senate

Oct. 28, 2019: Boeing released the opening statement of CEO Dennis Muilenburg to the US Senate at a hearing scheduled for tomorrow.

The statement may be downloaded here: Opening Statement-DM-102919

Boeing’s 777X problem: Shifting market, lagging economics, softening order book

By Judson Rollins

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Introduction

Oct. 28, 2019, © Leeham News: The Boeing 777X’s lackluster sales to date put it in a similar light as the soon-to-end A380 program. Is the era of the 400+ seat aircraft turning onto final approach?

There are only 344 777Xs on firm order at present. As many as 59 of these orders are soft. The aircraft has been available for sale since May 2013, during a period of near-record global airline profitability. This calls into question the market viability of the 777X – and whether Boeing will ever break even on the program.

Summary
  • VLA demand is limited; Airbus’s forecast seems overly optimistic.
  • 777X order book is concentrated on just a handful of customers.
  • Middle East carriers account for two-thirds of 777X orders.
  • Inferior economics limit the 777-8 to a narrow niche like the 777-200LR.
  • 777-9 economics outweighed by trip cost risk, lower yield of marginal seats.

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A year since the Lion Air JT610 crash

By Bjorn Fehrm

October 28, 2019, ©. Leeham News: Tomorrow it’s one year since the crash of Lion Year JT610 into the sea in Indonesia. The aircraft which went down was a brand new Boeing 737 MAX 8 and the world was stunned how such a new aircraft could crash.

The crash triggered the deepest crisis in Boeing’s 100-year history and revealed shortcomings in Boeing’s and FAA’s airworthiness work and supervision. The Lion Air JT610 final report was issued Friday and we now know what happened.

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Pontifications: Southwest to evaluate splitting airplane supplier next year

Oct. 28, 2019, © Leeham News: Gary Kelly, the chairman of Southwest Airlines, told CNBC Thursday that next year, the company will review whether to source airplanes from another manufacturer besides Boeing.

This, of course, means Airbus.

The prolonged grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX is the reason. Southwest says the grounding already has cost nearly $500m in lost revenues.

Kelly said the analysis won’t be for “smaller” airplanes, but he didn’t specify to CNBC what this means.

Southwest has 500 Boeing 737-700s seating 143 passengers at 30-31 inch pitch.

The Airbus A220-300 seats 145 at 32 inches in the Air Baltic one-class configuration.

The Embraer E195-E2 seats 146 passengers, but in a 28-inch pitch. At Southwest’s preferred 31-32 inch pitch, the E-Jet seats 132 passengers.

Since the context was the 737-8 MAX, did Kelly mean, not smaller than the -8? This isn’t known.

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Bjorn’s Corner: Analysing the 737 MAX crashes

October 25, 2019, ©. Leeham News: To better understand what went wrong in the Boeing 737 MAX crashes I have over the last half-year run Corner series around aircraft Pitch stability and Aircraft Flight Control systems and how these attack the problems of today’s airliners need for stable characteristics over a very wide flight envelope.

With this as a backgound, we will now in a series of Corners go into the Lion Air final crash report which is issued today, to understand what happened and why.

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Is reengining the Boeing 767 a good idea? Part 2.

By Bjorn Fehrm

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Introduction

October 24, 2019, © Leeham News: According to FlightGlobal, Boeing is investigating reengining the 767-400ER with GE GEnx engines to produce a new freighter and perhaps a replacement for the NMA project.

We started an analysis of what this would look like last week where we analyzed the aircraft fundamentals. Now, we continue with the capacities of passenger and cargo variants.Summary:

  • The 767-400ER is one size larger than the largest NMA. It would be a competitor to the Boeing 787-8. This makes the variant doubtful as an NMA replacement.
  • As a cargo variant, it adds less than 20% of cargo volume on top of the present freighter, the 767-300F. Is this attracitve enough to motivate a reengine for a freighter?

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