Bombardier’s bizjet deliveries up; profits down

 - April 2, 2007, 6:57 AM

Bombardier’s achievements this year in getting new business jets into the marketplace are particularly noteworthy in view of the company’s overall financial statistics. An increase in business aircraft deliveries helped boost Bombardier revenues in the first quarter ending April 30.

However, this year-over-year gain was offset by discounting on regional jet sales, cost overruns at Bombardier’s transit systems division and a strengthening of the Canadian dollar against U.S. currency. As a result, Bombardier suffered a first-quarter loss of $174 million, and the aerospace unit’s pretax loss widened to $23 million from $6 million.

Bombardier CEO Paul Tellier said the company will deliver 20 fewer 50-passenger CRJ200 regional jets this fiscal year, but the total number of aircraft deliveries (estimated at 324) should be about the same as last fiscal year because business jet sales are picking up.

Tellier also said 500 aerospace jobs will be cut in Montreal. These cuts come on top of about 3,000 jobs eliminated in the aerospace group last year. Efforts to restructure Bombardier Aerospace began last year with several initiatives, including workforce reductions and the consolidation of business aircraft production in Wichita and Montreal.