Mitsubishi Heavy’s aviation unit turns profitable in first half

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries’ (MHI) aircraft, defence and space unit continued to remain in the black, posting a first-half operating profit of Y12.6 billion ($117 million).

This was a stark contrast to its performance for the same period a year ago, when it posted a loss of Y22.1 billion.

MHI says this was the result of increased revenue from its commercial aircraft business. Revenue for the six months ended 30 September grew marginally — at 1% year-on-year — to Y310.5 billion.

However, the value of orders for the period fell nearly 15% to Y192 billion, dragged down by defence and space segments.

In the second quarter of the fiscal year, MHI’s commercial aircraft business delivered 14 shipsets for the Boeing 777 programme, compared to 11 the same period a year earlier. It also increased the number of 787 shipsets for the quarter, delivering 42 this year, compared to 36 last year.

MHI adds in its mid-term business plan that it is “accelerating [the] SpaceJet M90 development towards type certification and first delivery”. It did not specify any dates, nor did it address any rumours of a delay in the programme.

A day earlier, Mitsubishi Aircraft announced that Trans States Holdings, which owns several US regional carriers, had cancelled its order for 50 SpaceJet M90s, along with options for 50 more. The airframer said the decision was made to axe the orders for the 88-seat variant as it "does not meet the requirements of the United States market".