Despite the grounding of the 787 fleet thwarting deliveries and suppressing further orders, Boeing has reported a robust first quarter, with a 20 per cent increase in net income and its order backlog reaching a record US$392 billion.
The manufacturer’s backlog was added to with US$20 billion worth of net orders for 209 aircraft in the first quarter alone. The revenue of US$19.8 billion, although three per cent down on the same period last year largely as a result of 787-related offsets, was achieved through higher production rates for the 737 and 777. This, despite Boeing reporting 137 commercial aircraft deliveries in the first quarter – a volume identical to the corresponding period in 2012.
A telling signal of 787-related impacts in seen in the company’s reported cashflow, which was particularly hard hit, with operating cashflow reducing from US$837 million to US$524 million.
Boeing Military Aircraft (BMA) first quarter revenue was US$4.1 billion, primarily reflecting lower revenue on the F-15 program, which was partially offset by higher C-17 and Apache deliveries. BMA delivered the first Indian Air Force C-17 to flight test and completed the second Phantom Eye flight during the first three months of the year.
Boeing chairman and president Jim McNerney said: “Our first priority in the days ahead is to fully restore our customers’ 787 fleets to service and resume production deliveries.”
Full-year guidance shows Boeing expecting to generate revenue of up to US$85 million. It projects delivery of up to 645 commercial aircraft for the full year.