Aerospace & Defense

Airbus Q3 Earnings Popped, but Challenges Remain

Paul Ausick

European aircraft maker Airbus reported third-quarter and nine-month results Wednesday morning. The report continues to be plagued by undelivered planes waiting for parts. The company’s revenues for the third quarter of the year totaled €15.45 billion (about $17.48 billion), up 8% from €12.83 billion last year.

Adjusted consolidated EBIT in the second quarter totaled €1.56 billion, compared to €462 million last year. Adjusted EBIT for the commercial jet business totaled €1.58 billion, up from €655 million in the year-ago quarter.

Earnings per share (EPS) in the third quarter jumped 208% year over year from €0.40 to €1.23 as net income soared from €307 million to €957 million. The increase in net income and EPS is the result of 222 A320 deliveries, compared to 90 in the year-ago quarter. Analysts had forecast EPS of €1.03 and revenue of €15.35 billion.

Airbus reported net new orders for 256 commercial jets in the first nine months of the year, down slightly from 271 in the same period a year ago.

CEO Tom Enders commented:

The nine-month results mainly reflect the good performance on the A350 and the aircraft delivery profile. Even though we delivered more aircraft than a year earlier, we still have a lot to do to meet our commitments.

Airbus remains committed to its delivery projections of around 800 commercial jets for the year, a total that now includes “around” 18 A220s, the new designation for the CSeries program the company controls following its deal with Canada’s Bombardier. Airbus continues to expect adjusted EBIT of approximately €5 billion this year, reflecting a drop of €200 million sequentially.

In order for Airbus to meet its delivery goal, the company will need to deliver nearly 400 A320s in the fourth quarter, a challenge to be sure. Deliveries of the A350 have been a bright spot for the company, with 54 A350-900s and seven A350-1000s delivered through the end of September.

Shares of Airbus traded up about 3.1% in Paris Wednesday, at €96.82 in a 52-week range of €81.33 to €111.16. The 12-month price target on the stock is €121.13.