Bombardier’s profit dips 31 percent on cancelled orders

June 4th, 2009 - 1:39 pm ICT by IANS  

Toronto, June 4 (IANS) Canada’s Bombardier, the world’s third largest maker of civilian aircraft, Wednesday reported 31 percent drop in its profits for the first quarter.
Attributing the decline in its income to a large number of order cancellations, the Montreal-based company said it earned $158 million in the first quarter as compared to $229 million during the same period last year.

Bombardier, which is also a world leader in rail and metro transport, said its quarterly revenue fell from $4.8 billion to $4.5 billion.

“The severe recession affecting most economies worldwide has continued to have a negative impact on our first quarter financial results,” said company president and CEO Pierre Beaudoin in a statement.

He said: “Although overall deliveries have held up relatively well during the quarter, cancellations in business aircraft have outpaced the level of new orders.”

Bombardier, which employs 67,000 people worldwide, axed 3,000 jobs in its aerospace wing as demand for aircraft fell.

Delhi Metro is one of its major buyers of coaches.

The company reported cancellations of orders for 61 business aircraft during the quarter. However, it also received orders for 20 new business jets and 50 commercial aircraft during the period.

Bombardier had received orders for 118 aircraft during the same period last year.

The company has reportedly 25 new business jets for sale as major companies, mostly American, have postponed buying these luxury planes.

However, the Bombardier chief said the company’s rail business will help it weather the economic crisis.

“For the rail industry, the fundamentals remain strong and the recession is not currently expected to have a significant impact,” he said.

“We are taking action to cope with the present economic situation and we continue to invest in new products such as the CSeries, the Learjet 85, the ZEFIRO high-speed train…

“At $47.4 billion, our large and well diversified backlog (of rail and metro orders), combined with our strong balance sheet, high level of liquidity, and the cost cutting measures already in place, will enable us to weather the storm,” the CEO said.

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