Airbus posts billions in losses after being hit by corruption penalty

Marco Green
February 13, 2020

He made the remarks at the company's earnings news conference after it reported a loss of 1.36 billion euros ($1.48 billion) in 2019 because of a multibillion-euro bribery settlement with authorities in three countries. The year of loss was also marked with the settlement of $4 billion with prosecutors, over the charges of corrupt practices. Revenue increased 11% to 70.48 billion.

The company said its operating profits rose 19 per cent to 6.9 billion euros (USD 7.5 billion), adding that it expected to deliver about 880 commercial planes in 2020 against 863 in 2019.

Airbus turned in a "strong underlying financial performance", Chief Executive Guillaume Faury said, and will focus this year on operational and cost improvements as well as "reinforcing our company culture". Airbus shares were up 0.8% at 0908 GMT.

Airbus is well placed to benefit from the crisis surrounding arch-rival Boeing's (BA.N) 737 MAX airliner, grounded since last March after two deadly crashes. But production issues with the European group's own single-aisle A320 jet family may limit its ability to respond. But the company pledged higher jet deliveries and operating profit this year.

Journalists listen to Airbus CEO Guillaume Faury during Airbus annual press conference in Toulouse southwestern France Thursday Feb.13 2020. Commercial aircraft maker Airbus lost 1.36 billion euros in 2019 because of a multibillion-eur
Airbus posts billions in losses after being hit by corruption penalty

Faced with the danger caused by the outbreak of coronavirus in China, which has sent rippling effect in the entire airline industry, and the global economy as a whole, Airbus maintains its tone, assuring that the impact on the company would not be a substantial one, contrary to many beliefs. It is also targeting free cash flow of 4 billion euros, a 500 million euros increase.

-GOOD 2019: Revenue and closely-watched adjusted earnings before interest and taxes both grew in 2019, a solid performance despite the net loss partly caused by the expected penalty payments that settle allegations of bribery in the US, United Kingdom and France.

For Q4, adjusted EBIT fell 9% to €2.81B but came in ahead of €2.74B analyst consensus estimate, while revenues rose 4% to €24.31B, beating €23.33B consensus.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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