Airbus Announces Q1 2023 Profits, Delays A350F Service Entry

Airbus Announces Q1 2023 Profits, Delays A350F Service Entry

DALLASAirbus has announced its first quarter (Q1) 2023 results. The European plane maker revealed a lower-than-expected drop in its core earnings for the period, with commercial aircraft revenues declining by 5% to €11.8bn (US$13bn). Operating earnings for the group stood at €773m (US$854m), down 39% year-on-year.

In total, 127 airframes were delivered in Q1, including ten A220s, 106 A320 family, six A330s and five A350s. Meanwhile, there were 156 gross commercial aircraft orders, bringing the backlog to 7,254 commercial airframes.

Airbus Industrie F-WNEO Airbus A320Neo. Photo: Alberto Cucini/Airways.

“Strong Demand”

Guillaume Faury, Airbus Chief Executive Officer, said, “The first quarter confirmed strong demand for our products, particularly for commercial aircraft. We delivered 127 commercial aircraft, which is reflected in the Q1 financials. The quarter also benefited from a good performance in Helicopters.”

Indeed, Airbus Helicopters bagged 39 net orders during Q1 with an EBIT increasing to €156m (US$172m). Its Defence and Space order intake value stood at €2.5bn (US$2.7bn), but its EBIT was down to €36m (US$39m) compared to €106m (US$117) in Q1 2022.

The lower-than-expected results were partly blamed on “an adverse operating environment that includes in particular persistent tensions in the supply chain,” Mr Faury said. US engine maker Pratt & Whitney was singled out after issues with its GTF engines, especially in hot and dusty climates that have led to quicker than anticipated wear on the power plants.

Etihad Cargo has ordered seven A350Fs. Photo: Airbus.

A350F Delay

The results also revealed a delay in the entry-into-service of its A350 freighter. Despite the first components for the new cargo jet being produced by Airbus Atlantic in Nantes, the manufacturer said that “the industrial planning for this variant is being slightly adjusted with the entry-into-service now slipping into 2026.”

However, service entry of the new A321XLR is still expected to occur during the second quarter of 2024 as its flight test program progresses.

Airbus is also ramping up production of its other commercial airframes, including the A220, up to 14 per month “by the middle of the decade,” and the A320 family, which is expected to produce 65 aircraft per month by the end of 2024. The announcement of a second Final Assembly Line in Tianjin, China, has helped this target. Meanwhile, the company aims to produce four A330s per month in 2024 and nine A350s monthly by the end of 2025.

Featured Image: Airbus transport international F-GXLI A330-700 XL3 Beluga XL at Hawarden airport UK. Photo: Daniel Crawford/Airways.

European Deputy Editor
Writer, aviation fanatic, and Airways European Deputy Editor, Lee is a plant geek and part-time Flight Attendant for a UK-based airline. Based in Liverpool, United Kingdom.

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