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Summary of Paris Air Show 2015 Print E-mail
Wednesday, 08 July 2015 19:37

The 2015 edition of the Paris Air Show proved to be the biggest in the history of the event.  The 2015 show hosted more than 2,300 exhibitors from 48 countries, and attracted some 351,000 visitors.  Nevertheless, as we expected, order activity for commercial airliners was down a bit from the level seen at the 2013 Paris show.  Still, Airbus and Boeing each had significant success.  Airbus garnered firm orders for 124 aircraft at the 2015 show, and commitments for another 297.   Boeing recorded firm orders for 154 aircraft, plus commitments for an additional 177.  Within these totals, the order battle between the Airbus A320neo and Boeing 737 MAX narrowbodies played out, with the decided sales edge during the show going to the A320neo (though it should be noted that Boeing always claims not to actively compete in the air show orders race).

Embraer and turboprop manufacturer ATR also announced significant orders at the show, but Bombardier's sales haul was limited to six orders for its Q400 turboprop.  Still, Bombardier used the show to highlight significant progress made in the flight test campaign of its new CSeries jetliner family, and also announced a number of MRO and customer support agreements. Indeed, MRO was a topic on the minds of many at the Paris show, as companies look to aftermarket revenues as a way to shore up sales while the military aircraft market continues to decline and growth in the civil aircraft market slows.  The show also served as a platform for an interesting bit of news on the industry consolidation front:  UTC has received several lucrative bids for its Sikorsky helicopter manufacturing subsidiary.  The company is now considering selling Sikorsky to another company, rather than spinning it off into a standalone entity as it was previously inclined to do.

An acquisition of Sikorsky by Boeing would result in a military rotorcraft juggernaut, and also provide Boeing with an entree into the civil side of the helicopter industry, a segment where it does not currently compete.  A merger of Sikorsky with Airbus Helicopters would result in a dominant company in both the military and civil sides of the market, but such a deal might raise concerns within the U.S. government about non-U.S. ownership.

Another company rumored to be interested in acquiring Sikorsky is Lockheed Martin. Though it does not manufacture helicopters, Lockheed Martin is heavily involved in the rotorcraft industry, often as a systems integration specialist.  Lockheed Martin has been known in the past to have considered becoming involved in helicopter manufacture.

Now that it has decided that it will proceed, UTC says that a decision on how to proceed with the Sikorsky divestiture will be made by the end of September 2015.  It should be noted that all this is taking place against the backdrop of a ferocious debate in UTC’s home state of Connecticut regarding the business environment within that state.  This debate intensified with the recent passage in the Connecticut legislature of a new round of increases in business and personal taxes, which has resulted in companies such as GE seriously considering relocating from Connecticut.

 

Source: Forecast International

URL: http://blog.forecastinternational.com/wordpress/utc-moves-ahead-with-sikorsky-divestiture/

 

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