Data compiled by Andrew Melvin at Flight ACAS

Over two-thirds of last year's mainline aircraft deliveries had engines built by US company or its joint venture CFM

General Electric and its joint venture CFM International underlined their dominant position as the lead engine suppliers in 2006, powering 70% of all Airbus and Boeing deliveries, with the two engine companies equipping an unsurpassed 93% of the latter's shipments last year.

In this detailed analysis of the 2006 Airbus and Boeing delivery and order data using Flight's ACAS database, we reveal that GE is the lead supplier in the long-range mid-size widebody market, while CFM is in the driving seat on the narrowbody sector - both on the Boeing 737, where it is the sole supplier, and on the Airbus A320 family where it has the edge over rival International Aero Engines.

In 2006, CFM's share of the total Airbus and Boeing deliveries (all data is by aircraft unit) was almost 60% - or 495 of the 832 airliners delivered by the two airframers between them. This was a five percentage point increase on 2005 and, when combined with GE's 11% share, puts the CFM/GE combination at 70%, with International Aero Engines second on 18% (see graph below).

"With its sole-supplier status on the 737 family, CFM's 60% market share is de facto," says Charles Armitage, an analyst at Merrill Lynch. "And most of the rest is down to the success of the 'long-range' 777s, where GE was also the exclusive supplier."

Engine manuf market share

The breakdown by aircraft category also confirms the strong position held by the two GE divisions. On the long-range mid-size widebodies (A330/A340 and 777) where all the "big three" engine makers compete, GE is once again in charge with a 46% share of 2006 aircraft deliveries - marginally ahead of second-placed Rolls-Royce, which has just over 40% of the market (see graph below).

engine manufacturers 2

However, on the aircraft where there is a choice (the A330 and the 777, excluding the -200LR/300ER where GE has exclusive supplier status), the UK manufacturer was the market leader in deliveries last year. It has a 47% share of the A330 market and 50% on the 777, giving a total market share on both aircraft of 48% (see graph below).

engine manufacturers 3

With almost two-thirds of Boeing's 2006 777 deliveries consisting of the -200LR/300ER variants, GE's market share on the entire 777 family is 74%. Although R-R has a sole-source supply deal on the A340-500/600, the reduced output of the Airbus quadjet (just 22 were delivered last year) has hampered its ability to counter its US rival's similar position on the higher-selling 777-200LR/300ER.

On the narrowbody front, CFM continues to lead IAE on the A320 family in deliveries, with a 57% market share. The GE/Snecma joint venture extended its lead last year by six percentage points from 51% in 2005, which had been its lowest share in the past 10 years (see graph below). The strength of its position on the A320, combined with the entire 737 shipment last year as well as the handful of A340-300 deliveries, ensured that CFM was the indisputable market leader in the civil aeroengines sector.

engine manufacturers 4

The reliance that Boeing has on GE/CFM engines is evidenced by the fact that 93% of the US airframer's deliveries last year

5Air Berlin134
7Southwest Airlines112
9All Nippon Airways100
Source: Flight ACAS database

were equipped with one of the two companies' powerplants. While GE/CFM is also the lead engine supplier for Airbus, the European airframer has a more balanced portfolio, with the two representing just 50% of last year's deliveries.

In both cases, however, the GE/CFM share is the highest in recent years, and while their share of the overall delivery market has been hovering in the 60-65% band for most of the last decade, it leapt by five percentage points last year.

Armitage says the unprecedented level of GE/CFM-powered Boeing deliveries is partly due to the surprise success of the 777-200LR/300ER: "I don't think Boeing realised how successful these 777s would be - you wouldn't do an exclusive supply deal if you were expecting a lot of orders. I think Boeing has been a little taken aback by the number of customers for the long-range 777s."

Airbus V Boeing 2006 CFM v GE


Market share tends to "ebb and flow" over the long term, says Armitage, who forecasts that ultimately the race to power the next generation of widebodies will be headed by GE, with around 50-55%, followed by R-R on 40-45%.

He does not expect that CFM will continue to have its own way in the narrowbody sector, believing that it is "very likely" that the new offerings from Airbus and Boeing will both be offered with a choice of engine suppliers. "There's nothing to suggest the next 737 will have an exclusive engine supplier and the logical conclusion is that each engine supplier will get half the market. We know the CFM partners will stick together. The question is, will IAE? Or will P&W go it alone - possibly with MTU and the geared turbofan - with R-R bidding against it?"

Airbus Boeing 2006 region pie chart

Using Flight's ACAS database to evaluate last year's delivery data, it is evident the top five customers (airlines and lessors) represented around a third of the 2006 output of Airbus and Boeing. Top was International Lease Finance (ILFC), with 96 deliveries representing over 11% of all shipments last year. The lessor was Airbus's biggest customer, taking 14% of the manufacturer's output last year.

GE Commercial Aviation Services was the industry's second-biggest customer, and the lead recipient of Boeing aircraft.

Airbus v Boeing 2006 by region


AirbusBacklog / share
1CASC150 / 5.6%
2ILFC141 / 5.6%
4Indigo94 / 3.7%
5AirAsia85 / 3.4%
Total backlog 2,533
BoeingBacklog / share
1Ryanair161 / 6.5%
2GECAS114 / 4.6%
3Southwest Airlines112 / 4.5%
4All Nippon Airways97 / 3.9%
5ILFC89 / 3.6%
Total backlog 2,472
Total Airbus / Boeing backlog 5,005
Source: Flight ACAS database

Southwest Airlines was ranked third with 34 737 deliveries last year - equivalent to three aircraft every month - and the most prolific airline in terms of new aircraft arrivals. EasyJet was just behind, taking 32 A319s, while Ryanair was fifth with 27 737 deliveries.

The Pacific Rim is the single biggest market for new aircraft in unit terms (by nationality of operator rather than customer), with 32% of all deliveries last year.  On an individual basis the region was also top of the Boeing delivery rankings last year, but this honour fell to Europe for Airbus aircraft.

The ratio of narrow to widebody deliveries last year followed a similar pattern on production lines both sides of the Atlantic, with 78% of Airbus deliveries and 77% of Boeing's being single-aisle aircraft.




Airbus V Boeing 2006 by aircraft category

ACAS logo W200



All the data for this analysis was generated from the newly-launched ACAS version 3 database, which is due for release in the coming weeks.

This new version of ACAS incorporates a new user interface and features such as marker share reports, browse and drill-down capability.

For more information, click the text above or contact the ACAS team on:
T: +44 (1788) 564800

Airbus and Boeing have an order backlog approaching 5,000 aircraft, and the two companies' biggest single customer is ILFC with 230 aircraft on order. All but one of the top 10 customers have at least 100 aircraft on order.

The US lessor does not top either of the airframers' individual rankings - it is second to China Aviation Supplies (CASC) in the Airbus list and down in fifth in Boeing's table - which is headed by Ryanair with 161 orders.

With Boeing being such a major customer for GE's engines, it is no surprise that GECAS is the airframer's second largest customer with a backlog of 114 aircraft. However, the lessor's backlog of Airbus aircraft is fewer than 40 aircraft, putting it way down on the European airframer's ranking.



Manufacturer split / share*

1ILFC9611.5%  61/14.1%35/8.8%
2GECAS66 7.9% 28/6.5% 38/9.5%
3Southwest Airlines344.1% -34/8.5%
4EasyJet32   3.8%32/7.4% -
5Ryanair273.2% -27/6.8%
*Share of total 2006 deliveries **Units/share of manufacturer’s 2006 deliveries. All data is by aircraft unit.
Source: Flight ACAS database





Source: Flight International