- Andrew Burton/Getty Images
- The CEO of one of the world’s largest airlines said Boeing needs to get its “shit together” as the grounding of the 737 Max drags on longer than expected.
- Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary said that potentially none of the 58 new Max planes it had expected to arrive by summer 2020 could be delivered on time.
- “It could well move to zero if Boeing don’t get their shit together pretty quickly with the regulator,” he said, referencing Ryanair saying it now only expects 30 of the 58 737 Max planes it ordered to arrive by 2020.
- Ryanair’s profits fell by 21% in the first quarter due to high fuel costs, low passenger fares, and impacts of the 737 Max.
- Ryanair said it still has confidence in the Max, but O’Leary warned of job cuts and potentially closure of some of its airport bases as the plane remains stuck on the ground.
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The CEO of one of the world’s largest airlines said that Boeing needs to get its “shit together” as the ongoing grounding of its 737 Max planes extends beyond predictions and the carrier’s profits take a hit.
Ryanair, which exclusively flies Boeing planes, is among the airlines suffering the most after the 737 Max was grounded around the world. The grounding has led to cancelled flights and delayed deliveries for airlines around the world, many of whom are now demanding compensation.
Ryanair, the biggest low-cost carrier in Europe, had ordered 135 of the 737 Max planes, with the first 58 of those planes due to arrive by summer 2020. The airline was the fifth-biggest in the world by seating capacity in 2018, and is the world’s largest airline by number of routes.
Michael O’Leary, the CEO of the Irish airline, warned on an earnings call on Monday that it is possible none of those planes will arrive by then.
“It may well move to 20, it could move to 10, and it could well move to zero if Boeing don’t get their shit together pretty quickly with the regulator,” he said, CNBC reported.
Ryanair said on Monday that it had revised its expectations from the full 58 737 Max planes to only 30 planes arriving by the summer.
He also warned of potential job cuts as the plane remains grounded.
Ryanair also announced a 21% fall in profits to €243 million ($271 million) for the first quarter of this year, attributing the drop partly to the 737 Max delays. It also blamed higher fuel costs, lower fares for passengers, and fewer people from the UK flying because of Brexit-related fears.
- REUTERS/Baz Ratner
Regulators have not announced a return date for the plane, and delays have been continually extended beyond what anyone in the industry had expected.
Ryanair said on Monday that the plane would return “probably January at the earliest,” noting that it was originally expected to return earlier this year.
Boeing says it is working closely with regulators on updates to the plane and that it will be the safest plane ever to fly when the updates are certified and the plane returns to the sky.
Ryanair had said earlier this month that the grounding of the 737 Max means that it will carry fewer passengers and may close some of its airport bases – where planes and staff are permanently kept – as a result.
- REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol
Ryanair is among a number of airlines that have seen its profits hit by the 737 Max grounding. Many, including the Irish carrier, are now looking for compensation from Boeing.
American Airlines said last week that it is expecting to lose $400 million this year due to the plane’s grounding, and it has cancelled around 115 flights a day until November as it cannot fly its 737 Max jets.
Southwest Airlines also said it was removing the plane from its schedule until January 2020 and said it took a $175 million hit to its operating income in Q2 due to the Max.
- Read more about the Boeing 737 Max crisis: