EADS warned last week that Airbus’s new passenger jet program is “inherently risky”, as the European aerospace and defence group reported a strong increase in underlying earnings in 2012.
EADS, whose largest subsidiary is Airbus, recorded €3bn of earnings before interest, tax and exceptional items for the year to December 31, compared to €1.8bn in 2011.
“Good progress is being made on the A350 . . . but it remains challenging and there is no room left in the schedule [to accommodate further delays],” it said.
Tom Enders, EADS’ chief executive, described the A350 program as “inherently risky”, partly because the aircraft is mainly made from lightweight carbon composites rather than traditional aluminium.
The A350 is therefore a potential source of one-off charges in 2013, together with the A380, because Airbus is having to fix a wing-cracking problem on the superjumbo.
However, EADS is aiming to increase its earnings before interest, tax and exceptional items to €3.5bn in 2013.
Based on the article “EADS flags lingering challenges for A350” published in Financial Times