Will Power8 Be Enough To Resuscitate Airbus?
No one involved is commenting publicly... but a spokesman at an
Airbus plant in Lower Saxony says representatives with Stork Fokker
and Spirit Aerospace have visited two Airbus sites in recent weeks,
apparently sizing up the German facilities for possible buyout.
Deutsche-Press Agentur reports it isn't clear whether the
companies have already launched bids for the plants in Varel and
Nordenheim, which are on the auction block as part of Airbus'
controversial Power8 restructuring program.
As ANN reported in May,
German lawmakers have thrown their support behind Power8, mandated
by Airbus parent EADS earlier this year to trim the fat at Airbus,
and try to prevent the production snafus plaguing the A380 and A350
programs from occurring again.
EADS previously stated the aerospace consortium intended to sell
Nordenheim, as well as Filton in the UK and Meaulte in France. The
company plans to transfer ownership of Varel and Laupheim in
Germany, as well as a plant at Saint-Nazaire in France, according
to Thomson Financial.
If the reports are true -- and there's little evidence to cast
doubt on the matter -- Stork Fokker and Spirit will join
Bremen-based OHB Technologies and France's Thales in showing
interest in the two plants.
A spokeswoman for Stork Fokker would only confirm the Dutch
company is interested in aircraft companies in general, according
Will Power8 Be Enough?
The Power8 program calls for some 10,000 jobs to be cut at
Airbus' European plants... but there's increasing fear even that
massive number may not be enough.
The Observer reports Airbus and EADS CEOs Thomas Enders and
Louis Gallois -- fresh from a management
shuffle that saw the two men trade roles within the
consortium -- have warned further restructuring is under
consideration, to speed changes at EADS and shore up the company's
role as an aerospace powerhouse.
And that would likely mean still more job cuts.
For the moment, talk of additional restructuring is just that --
talk. But Enders recently said "further restructuring" would be
needed, if the US dollar continued to fall against the Euro.
The magic number cited by Enders is €1.40. As of Monday,
$1.37 will buy one Euro.