Airbus parent EADS has predicted booming profits this year after releasing solid financial results for 2011.
EADS, which also owns Eurocopter, Astrium and Cassidian, finished the year with a record order book worth €541bn euros (A$670bn) and revenues of €49bn (AU$60.6bn), a seven percent increase. Fourth quarter profits were up 72 per cent to €612m euros (A$757m).
EADS doubled its dividend on the results, which sent its share price up by nearly 10 per cent. Airbus said its A350 XWB program had continued to move forward without encountering further delays, further buoying the market.
The Euro giant said its strong order book, led by soaring orders for next generation commercial aircraft like the Airbus A320neo, would mean growing profits in coming years as orders translated into deliveries. EADS said it expected Airbus to deliver 570 commercial aircraft in 2012, up from 534 in 2011. EADS also reported strong growth in its Eurocopter division.
“The stage is set for EADS to turn the corner towards increased profitability,” CEO Louis Gallois, who is due to retire in May, said.
On the down side, EADS predicted weakness in its military division as European government pare down defence budgets. Airbus also faces continuing fallout over cracks discovered in the wings of the A380, with the company putting the cost of repairs at €105m.
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