A380 troubles, the latest news...

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A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby Verbal » Tue Apr 29, 2008 9:12 pm

Airbus in 'major review' of A380 deliveries-CEO
Reuters News 04/29/2008
Author: James Cordahi
(C) Reuters Limited 2008.

DUBAI (Reuters) - European aircraft maker Airbus (EAD.PA: Quote, Profile, Research) is carrying out a major review of delivery targets for the A380 superjumbo and might meet them, its chief said on Tuesday, raising the possibility of further delays.

"I am currently conducting a major review of the ramp up plan," Chief Executive Tom Enders told reporters in the United Arab Emirates.

"We are conducting a review right now, (it) might well be that we achieve that," he said in response to a question on whether Airbus would achieve its delivery targets.

Airbus' targets called for 13 deliveries of the world's biggest passenger aircraft in 2008 and 25 in 2009.

"This is a very steep ramp up and this is something one always needs to be concerned about," he said, calling it a "difficult subject."

An Airbus spokesman quickly dampened speculation of further delivery delays, telling Reuters after Enders' comments: "We are confident of achieving our delivery target."

Emirates airline EMAIR.UL President Tim Clark told reporters he was confident of taking delivery of four A380s by the end of 2008 and another by next March. Dubai-based Emirates has ordered 58 A380s, making it the single largest customer for the jetliner.

Enders said the company had a limited ability to save money by cutting jobs because it needs staff to meet its delivery obligations. Airbus has already announced plans to slash 10,000 jobs and sell plants to restore its competitiveness.

"At a time of ramp up, cutting jobs has its limits so we are thinking seriously about structural measures," he said.

Enders said it might consider offshoring "major parts of the work in manufacturing as well as engineering because the cost is a very serious problem for us with the dollar at $1.50 to $1.60 (against the euro)."

Airbus incurs most of its production costs in euros but sells its aircraft in dollars, putting it at a disadvantage to U.S. rival Boeing Co. (BA.N: Quote, Profile, Research)

But the challenge to off-shoring, he said, was in finding "high quality and trained personnel" to ensure standards are maintained. Enders also noted that meeting its targets also required suppliers to come through.

"The industry has multiple supplier problems and stuff like that obviously has to be taken into consideration as well," he added on Tuesday. "There will be no miracles."
Is there any possibility that the top management of Airbus could remedy this situation with some insider trading?

Over to you, George....
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby Sickbag » Wed Apr 30, 2008 7:36 pm

I'm sure Airbus' production management and legal compliance methods are both to the highest European standard
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby Verbal » Mon May 05, 2008 6:04 pm

Can't anyone deliver an airplane on time?
Airbus Warns Clients Of More A380 Delays, Report Says
Dow Jones 05/04/2008
Author: AFP

BERLIN (AFP)--Franco-German aircraft maker Airbus has written to clients warning them of more possible delays in deliveries of its A380 superjumbo, a German magazine report said Sunday.

The company will "nearly" manage to deliver 13 of the aircraft this year as planned, the weekly Wirtschaftswoche cited unnamed insiders as saying, but it definitely won't be able to deliver the promised 25 in 2009.

It is also highly questionable "whether we will be able to manage to produce four (A380) aircraft a month as planned in the foreseeable future," the magazine cited its source as saying.

A spokeswoman for Airbus contacted by AFP declined to comment, reiterating that the company's chief executive of nine months Thomas Anders was currently conducting a review of the A380 program.

Airbus, a unit of European Aeronautic Defence & Space Co. NV (EADSY), delivered the first A380 to Singapore Airlines last October - 18 months late - due to production problems.

Seventeen airlines have so far ordered or committed to ordering 193 A380s, the world's largest passenger airline.

The A380 has been beset by huge delays and cost overruns running into billions of euros, helping to drag EADS into the red and prompting a management shakeup and a major restructuring program.
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby DeskFlyer » Tue May 13, 2008 5:54 am

Darth: Luke, I know what you are getting for Christmas.
Luke: Noooo! That's impossible.
Darth: I felt your presents.

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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby B77W-QOTS » Tue May 13, 2008 6:15 am

QF design team working wonders again, imagine sitting all the way to LAX or LHR in that :shock: :roll:
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby DeskFlyer » Tue May 13, 2008 6:28 am

Maybe they should team up with DJ's financial team....think of the possibilities!! :mrgreen:

Apparently the seats are actually quite comfortable, and liberate some more leg room - but the palette....oh, the hue-manity!!
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby Procede » Tue May 13, 2008 8:38 am

Well, the extra delays aren't too bad, whilst inconvenient for the customers:
Airbus has confirmed a new round of delays to the A380 programme that will affect deliveries at least this year and next year.

The manufacturer says in a statement that it has “completed the A380 programme review and is now informing customers about changes to its delivery schedule”.

It says it now plans for 12 deliveries this year, rather than 13 as previously expected, and 21 next year, instead of 25.
Source: FlightGlobal

I'm guessing every part coming in and out of Toulouse is so well monitored by spotters, they can't keep their actual production and delivery rate a secret at all. Just look at Wikipedia and FlightBlogger

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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby FrankM » Fri May 16, 2008 9:00 am

As a slight hijack: The lastest edition of the German magazine "Aero" quoted a Lufthansa guy: "When Airbus announced a delay of the A380 for the second time and again Seattle remained absolutely quiet about it (instead of enjoying to give nasty comments about it), it was then when we realized in how deep trouble the 787 program is."
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby B77W-QOTS » Fri May 16, 2008 12:20 pm

Yesterday Melbourne had a special visitor, a SQ A380-800 9V-SKD(newest) it was diverted to MEL due to fog in SYD, Marty was very pleased indeed :mrgreen:

Here are a couple of pictures as she is lining up for Rwy 34L for departure to SYD:

Image

Image

Image
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby Verbal » Fri May 23, 2008 9:02 pm

EADS head sees 3-4 month A380 delivery delay-paper
Reuters News 05/23/2008
Authors: Nicolas Fichot and Astrid Wendlandt
(C) Reuters Limited 2008.

PARIS, May 23 (Reuters) - The head of EADS (EAD.PA: Quote, Profile, Research), parent of aircraft maker Airbus, told a French newspaper there could be a three- to four-month delay on A380 aircraft deliveries, extending a previous forecast of two to three months.

"We have had to slow down the production of the A380," Louis Gallois told the regional daily La Depeche du Midi in an interview published on Friday.

"This is a real bother for our clients, we will have to pay penalties. But it is not a catastrophe...The delay is limited to three to four months. Of course, we are committing ourselves to a new firm calendar."

Airline Air France-KLM (AIRF.PA: Quote, Profile, Research), which ordered 12 A380 aircraft, said on Thursday it was planning to demand compensation for the delay. Deliveries to the Franco-Dutch carrier were initially due to start in April 2009.

Gallois told the paper the aircraft maker still aimed the maiden flight of its military aircraft A400M to take place this summer but added this target was "tight".
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby Verbal » Thu Jun 26, 2008 5:09 pm

Airbus Unions, Management Play Down Franco-German Friction
Dow Jones International News 06/25/2008
Author: David Pearson

PARIS (Dow Jones)--Labor union officials at European commercial aircraft builder Airbus Wednesday sought to play down reports of friction between French and German workers at its headquarters in southwest France, saying they were the work of a small group of agitators and are aimed at destabilizing the company's 57,000 employees.

The officials acknowledged, however, that there had been tension at the main assembly plant at Toulouse due to the presence of some 2,500 workers who have been brought in from Germany to do cabling work on the first two dozen A380 superjumbos.

"It's true that when things are going well, people are very European, but nationalistic tendencies emerge when things get tough," Gerard Patot, chairman of the European Works Council of Airbus parent company European Aeronautic Defence & Space Co. NV (EADSY), told journalists after a biannual council meeting.

The German workers are completing the wiring on sections of the A380 that were produced at Airbus's plant at Hamburg, Germany, and taken to Toulouse for assembly. A380 deliveries are running nearly two years late due to a series of management and design blunders that meant that the cabling on different sections of the double-decker aircraft isn't homogenous.

Mostly hired from temporary employment agencies, the German workers have been brought in to wire the A380s by hand until a standardized manufacturing process is introduced with the 26th A380 on the production line.

Frederic Agenet, human resources director for EADS, said the work couldn't be done by workers from the Toulouse region because the technical documentation for these sections is all written in German.

French workers are grumbling that the imported German labor is living high on the hog, as they receive expatriate allowances. At the same time, disorganized working routines mean that teams of German technicians often can't start work on their shifts promptly, leading to grumbling among their French employees that they work fewer hours.

Agenet also acknowledged that proximity is also an issue, as the assembly plant at Toulouse was never designed to hold so many technicians. But he noted that Airbus is under intense pressure to get the planes out of the hangar door.

French and German labor officials have issued a joint statement expressing their determination to avoid attempts by a small group of former and current employees - and some managers - to destabilize Airbus by pitting French and German workers against one another.

"Our division can only profit management and can in no way resolve the difficulties of the A380," it reads. While the unions are trying to calm the situation, its states, "management is doing everything it can to stir up nationalist sentiment on both sides of the Rhine, notably to push through its Power8 plan."

Power8 is a broad industrial restructuring plan aimed at making Airbus more competitive thanks to savings of over EUR2 billion annually, achieved partly by reducing headcount at Airbus and its suppliers by nearly 10,000 through 2010.

The group of agitators has also been stirring up anti-German sentiment by pointing to the fact that the reduction in headcount has been greater in France, Spain and the U.K. than in Germany. EADS Chief Executive Louis Gallois had pledged that the pain of staff reductions would be shared equitably in France and Germany.

Documents handed out at the EADS works council Wednesday confirmed that headcount reduction is lagging in Germany. Only 23% of the planned 1,426 job cuts have taken effect in Germany by the end of May, compared to 69% of those planned for the U.K., 56% in Spain and 41% in France.

But Agenet said labor representatives were told Wednesday that administrative procedures for job cuts in Germany take longer than in the other countries, and that the staff cuts there will eventually kick in.
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby Verbal » Fri Jul 11, 2008 6:44 pm

Airbus plugs gap after exit of key executive
Financial Times 07/11/2008
Author: Kevin Done
(c) 2008 The Financial Times Limited. All rights reserved

Airbus has been forced into a reshuffle of its senior management following the resignation of one of its key executives in Germany.

Rüdiger Fuchs, one of the main players in the European aircraft maker's efforts to overcome the development and manufacturing problems with the A380 superjumbo, had left "to pursue other opportunities outside of Airbus", the company said yesterday.

His departure, after tension with other Airbus executives, comes as the group is under heavy pressure in the face of continuing delays in new aircraft programmes, most importantly the A380 and the A400M military transport aircraft.

Mr Fuchs headed the Airbus fuselage and cabin unit, the biggest manufacturing operation in the group, which was based in Hamburg. He also had control of related activities elsewhere in Germany and France.

The problems with the engineering processes for the wiring installations in the A380, which have led to more than two years of costly delays in the early deliveries of the superjumbo and helped to plunge Airbus heavily into loss in the past two years, arose in Hamburg.

Mr Fuchs had emerged as the key executive in the Hamburg operations with a key role in the A380 recovery programme.

Airbus said yesterday he would be replaced with immediate effect by Mario Heinen as executive vice-president and head of the transnational fuselage and cabin operations. Mr Heinen has wide-ranging industrial experience inside Airbus and for the past two years had been head of the A380 programme leading the recovery effort. He was previously head of the A320 programme, the narrow-body jet, which is the group's biggest volume product and cash generator.

Alain Flourens, hitherto head of the A320 programme, will take his place as head of the A380 programme. Daniel Baubil, deputy head of procurement, is to take over as head of the A320 programme.

Airbus warned airlines in May there would be more delays in the A380 delivery schedule. A recent review of its recovery programme had shown that the steep rate of increase in production planned for 2009 and 2010 was "not fully achievable".

Airbus warned it would only be able to deliver 12 A380s this year instead of the 13 planned since the recovery programme was put in place in the autumn of 2006, and next year it would deliver 21 instead of the planned 25.

It had been aiming to reach its full production rate of around four a month in 2010, but this target is also expected to be postponed.
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby Schorsch » Sat Jul 12, 2008 1:04 pm

Rüdiger Fuchs did - up to my knowledge - not exactly resign by surprise but was asked to do so.
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby David Hilditch » Sat Jul 12, 2008 1:15 pm

Rüdiger Fuchs did - up to my knowledge - not exactly resign by surprise but was asked to do so.

Many many years ago (50 or more) there was a famous British polar explorer called Sir Vivian Fuchs. He departed one day for a trip to the Antarctic. A British newspaper headline put it this way : "Vivian Fuchs off to the pole..."

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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby Verbal » Wed Jul 16, 2008 5:27 pm

Oh my. This could turn into World War III. And perhaps once again, the Americans will have to swoop in and break up the fight.
In a tangle; How having to wire the A380 by hand is hampering Airbus
Financial Times 07/16/2008
Authors: Peggy Hollinger and Gerrit Wiesmann
(c) 2008 The Financial Times Limited. All rights reserved

A decision to bring 2,000 workers from Hamburg to Toulouse has led to strife on the shop floor - and is failing to keep output of the world's biggest passenger jet at a pace likely to satisfy airline customers, writes Peggy Hollinger

Sabine Klauke stands in-side the skeleton of the A380 superjumbo, the world's largest passenger aircraft, and watches her team members take apart the bundle of multi-coloured cables they have just fitted. "The work is not streamlined. We are having to change things again and again," she says.

In the Toulouse assembly plant of Airbus, a German electrician peers through the struts separating the upper and lower decks in search of places to thread the 500km of wiring that will power the mammoth aircraft. A dizzying distance below, on the shop floor, dozens of engineers sit at a makeshift work-station.

As electricians resolve one by one the complex wiring problems that have cost Airbus and EADS, its Franco-German parent, two years of delays and more than €5bn ($8bn, £4bn) in profit, the engineers will adjust the computer blueprints to be used on future aircraft. "Normal installation time is two to three weeks," says Ms Klauke. "This way it is taking us four months."

Airbus, Europe's flagship of manufacturing co-operation, is facing an unprecedented industrial task. Announcing a raft of orders at the Farnborough air show this week, the group's backlog has never been bigger and it is ramping up production to levels it has never before achieved. But at the same time, the group is pushing through a painful restructuring in an attempt to integrate operations that, since Airbus came under the wing of the politically forged EADS in 2000, have enjoyed a degree of national autonomy.

Components factories will be sold, 10,000 jobs cut and the once indisputable right of its four founding countries - France, Germany, Spain and the UK - to share out the production work will no longer take priority over commercial decisions. It is doing all this while trying to rescue the A380 programme, one of the most ambitious in aviation history. The aircraft, which can seat as many as 850 passengers, will set Airbus apart from Boeing, its US rival suffering its own severe delays on the 787 Dreamliner. The gamble has cost the European group more than $20bn (£10bn, €12.5bn) to make happen.

But tempers are flaring on the shop floor over the emergency measures that have been adopted to get the first double-decker jets out of the hangar. Among them is the arrival in Toulouse of 2,000 German electricians to resolve the cabling problems that originated in their own Hamburg factory two years ago. Their presence on the final assembly line - where French workers normally fit together almost-completed parts of the aircraft - has sparked strong tensions in a factory already at capacity with its own 1,500 workers.

Unions say streamlined processes have been replaced by a do-it-yourself system that is stretching the patience of factory workers and threatening the group's ability to meet delivery targets.[/b] "They will first have to succeed at doing the work they should have done in Germany and then prepare to take on the workload themselves from 2009," says one French union boss. "These tensions show fears they may not get there."

In May, Airbus was forced to scale back delivery targets for this year and next, in an acknowledgement that the temporary measures adopted to resolve the cabling problems could not meet that schedule. It was coy about output for 2010 - scheduled at up to four a month - for fear of antagonising customers already publicly critical of the current delays.

Shop-floor frustrations have led to reports of scuffles between French and German workers - an echo of the management rivalries that have plagued the group. It was only a year ago that EADS emerged from the long period of damaging Franco-German power struggles that is blamed for many of today's difficulties.

Those stories have given ammunition to local politicians and others who fear the consequences for France's aerospace industry of the group's restructuring plan. Many inside and outside the group also resent what they see as a growing influence of German managers in a company that was created on the basis of a fine balance among national interests. They too seize on talk of factory floor wars as evidence the French and German camps cannot work together.

Unions, managers and ordinary employees all deny witnessing battles. Yet it is clear that there have been emotional clashes as a result of the high-pressure production process. At various times, French and German teams have complained that their access to the aircraft was deliberately being blocked by the other side. French workers also resent the extra pay their German colleagues receive for being seconded to Toulouse.

Mario Heinen, last week promoted to run the cabin and fuselage cross-border division after two years heading the A380 programme, admits the pressure to keep up with intense production schedules and the overcrowded conditions have not made things easy. "We have been working on these initial aircraft in a handmade way. It is not a perfectly organised industrial process." But there was no choice. "We have delivered five high-quality aircraft this way. If we had left the work in Hamburg, to wait for a new wiring design, we would not have delivered one by now."

Mr Heinen rejects suggestions that the tensions stem from any inability of the French and Germans to work together. "People get nervous when things do not go as they should do. Yes, there are exchanges and yes, there are differences of views. But afterwards we find a solution."

Hannes Mechler and Jean-Pierre Guizerix are on the front line of these exchanges. They lead German and French teams on the second wave of aircraft to be fitted in Toulouse, where some problems have been resolved. They too say that the going has been tough at times. "The industrial process is very ramshackle," says Mr Guizerix. "We are in deep shit." The two men are frank about the fact that cultural differences have aggravated the effects of overcrowding on the assembly line.

Mr Guizerix, with his pink T-shirt and pierced ear, glances over at Mr Mechler's neat button-down shirt and slacks. "We shout a lot. At the beginning the Germans were very surprised by the way we work. It is rugby management," he says. French teams also found German working habits difficult to get used to. "They need everything written down. We just work it out as we go."

Mr Mechler agrees that the French temperament is difficult for Germans to understand. "We don't shout. It is not the German way," he says. But neither is the kissing French colleagues engage in first thing in the morning. "We Germans come into work first thing in the morning a bit like this . . . " He shuffles along with his head bowed and tips a cursory nod to Mr Guizerix.

Mr Guizerix acknowledges, joking aside, that there was frustration on the French side that German teams seemed less efficient. But the reasons were obvious, he says. "The big difference at the beginning was that the French teams knew each other. We knew everyone's strong and weak points, how they worked. The Germans had never worked together. It was a new process and they were far from home. Before teams can work together, they have to know each other. It is no different in any company."

It did not help that at least 60 per cent of the Germans were not even Airbus people but temporary staff drafted in from outside. The strains have led to carping; minor damage has even been inflicted on one or two cars. Action has been taken against offenders and 50 German temps asked to leave. Yet reports of Franco-German clashes still circulate and last week local politicians again lobbied Paris to intervene. Ms Klauke and colleagues fear the impact these rumours could have on teams. "There is no Franco-German tension in my team today," says one German line manager, "but I am worried for the future."

The risk is that trouble in the factory could jeopardise Airbus's recovery programme. "Achieving our targets will be very difficult," says one French union official. "There are too many tensions and too much suspicion."

"Ramping up to full-scale production is a Herculean task," says a German union leader. "When wiring problems emerged, we flew incomplete sections from Hamburg to Toulouse to keep to schedule. Maybe we should have stopped production. Instead we are muddling by. Perhaps we need to start thinking about whether our goals aren't still too ambitious." Both men, senior officials in their unions, declined to have their names published for fear that their comments could further inflame a fraught situation in Toulouse.

It was in April that the tensions and rumours seemed to reach boiling point. Hubert Prévaud, an official of France's CGT union federation who is not afraid to talk, puts the crucial moment down to a half-day strike against the sale of two French factories under the restructuring programme known as Power 8. As roads around the Toulouse factory filled up with 1,500 banner-waving protesters, the rumour went around that French workers were barring entry to German electricians arriving for the early shift. "It simply wasn't true," says Mr Prévaud, who was at the protest. "The French did not block the Germans. They just stopped everyone from going in."

Within days a second rumour had broken out - that German workers in Hamburg had ejected a visiting team of French engineers from the factory. "Lots of people have told me about it," says another senior French union activist who also prefers not to be named. "But I haven't met anyone who has spoken to any of the people involved or even knows who they are."

Some union members accuse middle management of fuelling the reports. Mistrust at executive level has long tarnished the group's efforts at cross-border industrial co-operation. "Basically each side suspects the other of trying to gain the upper hand," says Horst Niehus, head of the works council at the Hamburg factory.

But all acknowledge that there has been a fundamental shift in the balance of power at EADS and Airbus that may be prompting deeper fears. For some it dates back to the management restructuring negotiated a year ago by French President Nicolas Sarkozy and Angela Merkel, the German chancellor. The French government and Lagardère, the media group, together control 22.5 per cent of EADS voting rights while Germany's 22.5 per cent interest is represented by Daimler, the automotive group.

In that deal, Frenchman Louis Gallois took over as sole chief executive at EADS, ending an awkward dual management structure. But German-born Tom Enders won the chief executive's role at Airbus, the main operating subsidiary, while EADS' other plum operating jobs - at Eurocopter and defence - also went to natives from across the Rhine. Those appointments and subsequent changes in certain key positions have sparked anxiety inside the sleek glass-panelled Airbus headquarters outside Toulouse.

Just a few days after the strike a few middle managers, calling themselves the "group of 15", circulated an anonymous memorandum accusing the French government of allowing the Germans the upper hand at EADS and Airbus, to the detriment of France's aerospace industry. They cite a list of grievances including slower implementation of cost-cutting and job losses in Hamburg and Munich and allegations that French suppliers are being awarded a lower proportion of business from Airbus than are German companies.

Airbus executives reject many of the allegations, saying German workers are just as uneasy about the arrival of French managers in areas normally run independently in Germany, such as design and engineering. They acknowledge, however, that Germany has not cut costs as quickly as France. They argue this is due to more complex labour laws and insist that the German factories will catch up rapidly in the coming weeks. Nonetheless, French fears may not be wholly unfounded, according to German government officials. "It could be that the agreement is maybe a bit worse for France than Germany," one admits.

One member of Airbus's European works council, wishing to withhold his name, says a power struggle of national economic interests is being felt inside the company as it attempts to restructure. "It is not Power 8 that has created the inequality - it is the will of the different governments," he says. "Germany protects its interests and has even co-operated with unions [to find German investors and force site sales to domestic companies]. But the French state is less present. It is more prepared to tolerate the loss of aerospace activities than the Germans are."

The CGT's Mr Prévaud says some French workers feel Mr Sarkozy has sold them out to preserve the delicate FrancoGerman political relationship. It is a feeling shared among politicians of the Midi-Pyrenées region where Airbus is based. It is estimated that 84,000 jobs rely directly or indirectly on the aircraft group. Many of these could be at risk as Airbus seeks to reduce its euro-based costs by sourcing more components in dollar-based economies.

Such were the fears that the head of the Toulouse chamber of commerce even wrote to Christine Lagarde, finance minister, accusing the German government of scuppering the creation of a strong French supplier in the region after Airbus postponed the French disposals - as it had done in Germany.

Fabrice Brégier, chief operating officer at Airbus, says such reactions stem from the group's decision a year ago to bury national differences. "We are trying to create one company driven by business factors," he says. "We are changing habits and rules and, when we do that, we destabilise people. It explains why we have this talk of a Franco-German 'war'. We need to align people, not just inside but in the external environment as well."

The problems of the A380 and the uncertainties created by the restructuring have added extra pressure. "How can anyone believe that does not bring up confrontation and resistance to change?" he asks.

Mr Brégier even admits his own past rivalry with Mr Enders may have left its mark. In the aftermath of fierce power battles between the former French and German management sides at EADS, the two men were often seen as rivals for the leadership. "We concluded an alliance because we needed to restructure this company," Mr Brégier says. "We are fully aligned and perhaps some of our top managers don't understand that."

Mr Brégier remains confident that the work being done will result in a stronger Airbus. The German teams will begin to go home early next year and the industrial process will gradually return to normal, he adds. That is not to say the tensions will disappear completely. "These are real aspects of working together in a multicultural environment," Mr Brégier says.

For the trade unions, getting Toulouse back to normal is just the first step. "Our company is still too divided by divergent political interests," says Mr Prévaud. "What was once a symbol of the success of the European Union has in 2008 become a symbol of its failure."

Additional reporting by Gerrit Wiesmann
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby Sickbag » Wed Jul 16, 2008 7:14 pm

Oh my. This could turn into World War III. And perhaps once again, the Americans will have to swoop in and break up the fight.
And just like WW2 and the 787 project they will be a couple of years late in showing up....
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby Verbal » Mon Sep 08, 2008 6:46 pm

Emirates temporarily withdraws A380
Gulf News 09/06/2008
Author: Shakir Husain

Dubai: Emirates, which put the A380 superjumbo into service on its Dubai-New York route on August 1, on Friday withdrew the plane citing engineering work.

The plane, which was scheduled to depart for New York on Friday, remained in Dubai.

The airline's services to New York have not been affected due to the plane's temporary withdrawal as the A380 has been replaced with a wide-body Boeing 777-300ER on the route.

"Our A380 was scheduled for training use in between commercial flights. There is also planned engineering work which is taking longer to complete than expected," an Emirates spokesperson told Gulf News on Friday.

Emirates received its first double-decker plane in late July and is the only airline commercially operating the A380 to the US.

The thrice weekly service was launched with fanfare amid huge response from people looking for a flying experience in the world's largest passenger aircraft.

The airline spokesperson could not say if there were any booking cancellations from those who only wanted to fly on the A380.

"Our teams are working hard to minimise any inconvenience caused to our passengers," the airline said, adding that the plane will be "deployed on commercial service again as soon as possible."

Emirates is the biggest customer for the Airbus plane and will receive 57 more A380s over the next few years.

The Emirates A380 is equipped with shower spas and a lounge.

It is arranged in a three-class configuration, with 399 seats in Economy, 76 fully-flat seats in business class and 14 private suites in first class.

Emirates expects to receive five more A380s by April. The airline plans to use A380s to London Heathrow from December 1 and to Sydney and Auckland from February.
No word whether this is due to cheap composites....
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby Procede » Mon Sep 08, 2008 9:59 pm

No word whether this is due to cheap composites....
Maybe having those showers just above the avionics racks wasn't such a good idea after all...

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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby Sickbag » Thu Feb 05, 2009 8:56 pm

Korean Air is to purchase two more A380 aircraft, upping its A380 order to 10 aircraft.

The airline will receive the two additional A380s in May and June of 2014 respectively.

The first eight are due to be delivered between 2010 and 2013. Korean Air first ordered five A380s in 2003, and added three more last year.

The airline made the announcement as it reported record-high operating revenue of over 10 trillion Korean Won during 2008.
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby Verbal » Thu Feb 05, 2009 10:01 pm

Kingfisher Airlines defers A380s purchase by 2 years
The delivery of the aircraft is deferred from 2012 to 2014 as the existing model has a higher take-off weight and will consume more fuel to fly non-stop to the US
P.R. Sanjai

Mumbai: India’s second largest private carrier, Kingfisher Airlines Ltd, has deferred its purchase of five A380 aircraft, the world’s largest, by two years as it has sought to lower operating costs for the plane, according to two executives with the carrier.

A Kingfisher executive, who refused to be identified, said the airline has requested Airbus SAS to modify certain specifications for the A380s it has ordered so as “to increase fuel and operational efficiency”.

“Kingfisher Airlines is looking at A380s with a lower weight to fly non-stop between India and the US. This may delay our A380 acquisition programme by about a year,” the executive said. “But we have not heard from Airbus yet.”

The airline is still keen on the A380s and does not plan to cancel its orders, he added.

A Kingfisher spokesperson confirmed the delays.

The delivery of the aircraft is deferred from 2012 to 2014 as the existing model has a higher take-off weight and will consume more fuel to fly non-stop to the US, the spokesperson said in a text message. He too didn’t want to be named.

An Airbus executive denied the development. The Vijay Mallya-promoted airline had confirmed orders for five A380s in 2005 with France’s Airbus, with an option to buy five more, primarily for long-haul operations. That was when the country’s aviation sector was at its peak. No other Indian carrier has placed orders for the plane.

Ambitious to fly abroad, Kingfisher Airlines had even decided early in 2008 to advance the delivery of the A380s and convert its options into orders.

The list price of one A380 is $315 million (about Rs1,530 crore).

For the December quarter, Kingfisher suffered a net loss of Rs626.24 crore and an incurred initiation cost of Rs174 crore for its international operations.

Kingfisher, which started its international operation on 3 September with Bangalore-London flights, has already sold three of its five A340 planes to Nigeria’s Arik Air.

A Mumbai-based aviation analyst said any cancellation at this point of time was welcome considering declining passenger traffic.

“Deferring delivery of A380 will further rationalize the capacity. This will also help Kingfisher Airlines to arrest losses,” he said on condition of anonymity.

Airbus, on its website, claims A380’s direct operating cost per seat is 15-20% lower than rival Boeing Co.’s B747-400. Airbus has so far secured orders for 198 A380s, of which 13 are already flying.
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby flyboy2548m » Thu Feb 05, 2009 10:03 pm

An A380 at Kingfisher better come with a large supply of gas masks.
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby DeskFlyer » Thu Feb 05, 2009 11:57 pm

Just how many Kingfisher aircraft are lying around at TLS - undelivered & increasingly unlikely to ever be delivered, at least to IT?
They were fortunate to have Arkia taking the A345s.
Doesn't seem likely at this point that they will be in any shape to take delivery of the A380 frames either unless their situation improves dramatically.
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby Schorsch » Fri Feb 06, 2009 8:03 am

An Airbus executive denied the development.
Because it is crap.
Big weight saving is already done, there is not much more an airline can expect, the A380 you get now is as good as the one you get in 3 or 5 years.
I guess in current situation a full ramp up of A380 production is not terribly bright.
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby reubee » Sat Feb 14, 2009 7:10 am

my house roof is now getting a wake turbulence test three times a week. I'm looking forward to the day one of the local island hopping Islander/Trislander passes underneath.
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Re: A380 troubles, the latest news...

Postby J » Sat Feb 28, 2009 2:06 am

As I wait to board my lowly UAL 744 in SYD I noticed the following plane creeping up to a nearby gate. It didn't seem to be having any trouble.
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