Airbus accelerates. After overcoming one of his most complex years due to the impact of the coronavirus, the European aeronautical giant managed to deliver 611 commercial aircraft to 88 customers in 2021. This figure represents an increase of 7% compared to the 566 deliveries in 2020. The improvement was even more significant in orders. Last year, Airbus doubled its net orders to 507 units, 47% more than the 268 orders of the previous year.
The CEO of the company, Guillaume Faury, has been optimistic when commenting on the results of 2021. “During the last months of last year we have already noticed a significant acceleration in the recovery of the aeronautical industry“. Our commercial aircraft achievements in 2021 reflect the commitment and resilience of our Airbus teams, customers, suppliers and stakeholders around the world, who have come together to deliver remarkable results.”
“The year has seen significant orders from airlines around the world, indicating confidence in the sustainable growth of air travel after Covid-19. Although uncertainties remain, we are on track to increase production in 2022 to meet the needs of our customers. At the same time, we are preparing the future of aviation, transforming our industrial capacities and implementing the roadmap for decarbonisation”, explained the manager.
When asked about the impact that the new variant of coronavirus is having on its industrial activity, the CEO of Airbus explained that it is still early to assess it.”We are monitoring the impact of omicron. At the moment its effects are not being very significant but we are very attentive to the progress in places like China where we have a large industrial presence”.
Airbus data shows a recovery of appetite on the part of the company’s customers. A trend that the company hopes will represent a turning point in the current crisis. The 711 gross orders translated into 507 net orders, after discounting cancellations. Regarding the behavior of the different families, the A320neo obtained 661 new gross orders, a growth of 55% compared to 2020, reaffirming its position as the star product of the European company.
Precisely, one of the greatest challenges that the company is going to face is to respond to the enormous volume of orders that this type of aircraft holds. In this sense, Faury has highlighted the intention of the company to reach 65 units produced in 2023a significant increase compared to the 40 on average achieved in 2021.
For its part, the A220, one of the latest additions to the Airbus portfolio focused on short haul, secured 64 gross new firm orders. In this case, the figure assumes maintaining the interest shown by customers during the previous year for this type of aircraft.
In the wide-body segment, Airbus secured 46 gross new orders. In this section, the 30 orders achieved by the A330 stand out. This family has achieved largest increase in orders since, in 2020, the demand for these aircraft remained in two units.
Regarding the A350, the star model focused on intercontinental routes has received 16 orders. This figure represents a decrease compared to the 21 harvested in the previous year. A clear symptom that commercial aviation still has important doubts about the evolution of long-range flights. At the end of 2021, the Airbus order book stood at 7,082 aircrafta decrease of 1.4% compared to the 7,184 that it had at the end of 2020.
In this way, the European aeronautical group managed to improve much of the operational forecasts it had when 2021 started. Next February, its economic results should show how much of this improvement was transferred to the company’s accounts.