by Mauro Orru
Airbus has announced higher revenue and earnings for the third quarter and remains committed to its goal of delivering 720 commercial planes this year. Despite ongoing supply-chain challenges, the European plane manufacturer plans to ramp up production of its popular A350 wide-body aircraft.
As of the end of October, Airbus had already delivered 559 aircraft to customers. To meet its annual target, the company will need to deliver an additional 161 planes in November and December. Last year, Airbus had initially aimed for 720 deliveries but was hindered by supply-chain issues.
The aviation industry has been grappling with these challenges for months, causing difficulty in procuring spare parts and raw materials.
“Our commercial aircraft demand remains strong, especially in the wide-body market,” stated Chief Executive Guillaume Faury. He also acknowledged that the supply chain will continue to pose challenges as they move forward with production ramp-up.
Airbus maintains its production targets, aiming to manufacture 75 A320 narrow-body aircraft per month by 2026. Additionally, the company plans to produce four A330 wide-body aircraft per month by 2024, while the production of the larger A350 model is expected to increase to 10 aircraft per month by 2026, up from the previous target of nine per month.
Airbus Resumes Production of Wide-Body Planes as Demand Surges
Airbus, one of the leading aircraft manufacturers, has successfully rebounded from the early setbacks caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. In response to travel restrictions and border closures, the company had previously reduced the production of its wide-body planes. However, with the recent surge in demand for international air travel, airlines are now in urgent need of additional planes to expand their capacity.
According to the latest financial report released by Airbus on Wednesday, the company achieved a revenue of 14.90 billion euros ($15.94 billion) for the three months ending in September. This represents a remarkable 12% increase compared to the same period last year.
Furthermore, net profit experienced a significant jump, reaching EUR806 million, which translates to a 21% increase. Adjusted earnings before interest and taxes, which is Airbus’s preferred measure of profitability, also witnessed a similar growth of 21%, totaling EUR1.01 billion.
These impressive results have exceeded analysts’ expectations. A company-provided consensus, based on estimates from 22 analysts, projected revenue of EUR15.10 billion, with a net profit of EUR837 million and adjusted earnings of EUR1.14 billion.
Looking ahead, Airbus maintains its confidence in achieving adjusted earnings of approximately EUR6 billion for this year. Additionally, free cash flow, an important metric closely monitored by analysts and investors, is expected to be around EUR3 billion before mergers and acquisitions and customer financing.
The exceptional performance and positive outlook of Airbus serve as a testament to the company’s resilience in the face of the ongoing challenges in the aviation industry.