Eurocopter president and CEO Lutz Bertling says the EADS subsidiary will likely deliver about 450 helicopters this year, similar to last year’s numbers, but revenue will increase due to a trend toward larger helicopters.
Bertling says though the company received 30 order cancellations in the closing months of 2008, “all have been relocated” to new customers. “There are no white tails, or should I say ‘white fenestrons’”, he adds.
Despite lower volumes, Eurocopter expects its revenue to hold or increase from 2008 levels due to a trend toward larger helicopters, a development Bertling says means Eurocopter “is not in a deep crisis” despite the economic climate.
“It will be a year of stabilisation rather than a year of large crises,” Bertling says.
The company last year generated $5.85 billion in turnover, up 7.5% from 2007, obtaining an overall 51% market share with respect to the number of helicopters delivered to the military and civilian sectors. Eurocopter’s service business continues to grow as well, representing 35% of its bookings. Backlog stands at $18 billion, representing 1,550 helicopters, says Bertling.
Affirming the trend toward larger helicopters, Eurocopter says it has111 letters of intent from customers for its new 16-passenger EC175 (pictured below), slated for entry into service in 2012.
The company has not yet disclosed the price of the aircraft, which will initially serve the oil and gas industry.