It is the dawn of a new era at Europe’s aerospace giant EADS with Louis Gallois taking over alone at the helm to guide the company back into profit. But just like some Europudding tv mini-series there is not one, but three big players in the new company setup.
Germans Rudiger Grube and Thomas Enders run respectively the boardroom and Airbus, and the chemistry between the three will be crucial to the Power Eight restructuring plan. Some have commented that six Germans now sit on the board against two Frenchmen; an unthinkable situation until recently.
EADS has suffered in the past from Airbus’s complex triple-ownership and double executive. Economics, not politics, has determined the shape of the new company. That involves shedding six factories, to be chosen definitively by the end of September.
Gallois says that despite the company’s troubles he believes that the delivery dates for Airbus’s new monster A 380 are realistic. Just one takes to the skies this year, with 13 next year, 25 the year after, and peak production of 45 a year is forecast for 2010. However Gallois added Airbus’s A 400M transport plane looks likely to miss its end 2009 delivery date.