PARIS • Airbus saw its profits plunge by 30 per cent in the first quarter due to delays in delivery of its A320neo engines but still plans to supply 800 aircraft this year, the company said yesterday. Its net income dropped to €283 million (S$453 million) from €409 million for the same period last year.
"The first-quarter performance reflects the shortage of A320neo engines," Airbus chief executive Tom Enders said in a statement. "It's a challenging situation for all but based on the confidence expressed by the engine makers and their ability to deliver on commitments, we can confirm our full-year outlook.
"This still leaves us with plenty to do this year to reach the target of around 800 commercial aircraft deliveries."
The European plane maker posted adjusted net earnings of €14 million - a better result than the marginal loss forecast by analysts, Bloomberg News reported.
Earlier this month, Airbus announced it would boost production of its A320 aircraft, despite problems in its supply chain. The A320neo is a more fuel-efficient version of the company's best-selling airliner, the A320.
The planes are equipped with a new generation of engines and have aerodynamic modifications that allow airlines to save 15 per cent on fuel.
Some 181 A320neo aircraft were delivered last year, up from 68 during 2016.
But the new engines have suffered from technical glitches and delays, and Mr Enders earlier admitted that "the A320neo ramp-up remains challenging".