Aircraft manufacturer Airbus expects to deliver the same number of commercial aircraft this year as in 2020, after revealing another year of billion-euro losses.
It has reported a full-year loss of €1.13 billion for 2020, following the €1.36 billion suffered in 2019 when it was hit with £3 billion of bribery fines. Revenues fell by 27% to €49.9 billion as the effects of the pandemic took their toll.
Airbus delivered 566 commercial aircraft in 2020, down from 863 the year before.
Airbus chief executive Guillaume Faury said: “Many uncertainties remain for our industry in 2021 as the pandemic continues to impact lives, economies and societies. We have issued guidance to provide some visibility in a volatile environment.”
The Times reported that the losses and news that Airbus is on course to deliver about 566 aircraft “spooked investors” who had been expecting at least 100 more in 2021.
Sandy Morris, a leading industry analyst with Jefferies, the investment bank, told the newspaper: “We remain cautious about the pace at which the airline industry can rebuild its balance sheet to the point where aircraft demand rises significantly.”
Airbus will continue to withhold shareholder payouts.
Peter McNally, an industry expert at research firm Third Bridge, told the Guardian: “Commercial airlines are off to a difficult start in 2021 and the outlook from Airbus reflects that.
“The situation could improve as vaccines are more widely distributed, but Airbus executives note most of their customer base will be burning cash most of this year.”
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