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Report: Boeing may reacquire Spirit at higher price despite hating optics

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Amid safety scandals involving "many loose bolts" and widespread problems with Boeing's 737 Max 9s, Boeing is apparently considering buying back Spirit AeroSystems, the key supplier behind some of Boeing's current manufacturing problems, sources told The Wall Street Journal. Spirit was initially spun out from Boeing Commercial Airplanes in 2005, and Boeing had planned to keep it that way. Last year, Boeing CEO Dave Calhoun sought to dispel rumors that Boeing might reacquire… (arstechnica.com) More...

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jmilleratp
jmilleratp 17
It would be great if the Boeing CEO called a Press Conference, came to the podium and said, "We have no idea what we're doing," turned around and left.
willfe
willfe 5
Oh he *does* do that, every single time. He just uses more words to express the sentiment. C-levels can't speak in plain language. They have to leverage an optimized, well-curated synthesis of board-certified techniques to properly communicate the company's plans going forward, subject to market conditions of course :D

Blech. I feel sick even writing that out as a joke :)
tomballenger
Thomas Ballenger 3
leaving his letter of resignation on the podium!
WendyCho
WendyCho 9
Can we please use Spirit *Aerosystems* instead of just “Spirit” here?
msetera
msetera 6
I know of a major airplane manufacturing company that is in dire need of a new CEO and a complete purging of the entire Board of Directors...
ghstark
Greg S 4
Spinning off Spirit might have made sense from a business perspective but never made sense from a safety perspective. You can't control the quality of products at a different company, you're only alternative is to find a different supplier ... but Spirit is the only company that makes the product Boeing needs.
ColinSeftel
Colin Seftel 4
Nearly all manufacturers make extensive use of outsourced manufacturing but this does not mean that they are unable to control the quality or outsourced parts. To do it successfully, an organization must treat supply chain management as a strategically critical function.
In December 2022, Ihssane Mounir was named senior vice president of Boeing Commercial's global supply chain. Mounir was previously senior vice president of commercial sales and marketing and this is a concern, because he would likely be more experienced on demand side rather than on supply side management.
mikehe
Mike Hindson-Evans 4
Agree. You do not outsource a problem. Fix the problem(s) first.
djames225
djames225 2
Agreed. Fix the problem not try buying up a supplier hoping that will fix it.
Also, hard not to notice the timeline when Boeing started having Spirit Aero issues, but then again those issues should have been caught prior to final assembly in Renton, and blaming Spirit Aero for a mistake made by a Boeing employee is ridiculous.
mikehe
Mike Hindson-Evans -1
Ah: do mot let the facts get in the way of a good story.
mikehe
Mike Hindson-Evans 1
Complete the following sequence.

Downsize rightsize capsize...
mbrews
mbrews 7
Good post, Torsten. Sounds intriguing. Spirit makes fuselages at Witichita KS USA. And Spirit makes fuselages in Ireland. In the EU.

Intrigue #1 - would this mean that Boeing controls the allotment / sequence of AIRBUS single aisle airframes ??

Intrigue # 2 I don’t know the current material flow of A320neo and A220 fuselages to the AIRBUS Alabama USA assembly factory.

As I recall, Delta Airlines USA expects MANY new A220 and A320 neos to be delivered from the Alabama plant (in their neighborhood of Atlanta GA USA).
djames225
djames225 5
Ireland (old Short Brothers mnanufacturing acquired from Bombardier) A220 Wings, pylons and related materials, mid fuselage and aft fairing pkg.
Prestwick Scotland builds all the wing leading and trailing edge pieces for the A320 family.
Kinston North Carolina A350 central section panels, front wing spar and fixed lead edge.

I have a feeling that Airbus will put in a request to section off Spirit's divisions and purchase the Short Brothers and Prestwick operations. Then move the A350 parts production there.

The A220 Fuselages are mostly assembled at Airbus Mirabel then shipped
pika1000
pika1000 1
Don't forget the wing components for the 737, 777, and 787 MLE as well as floor beams for the 777 in Tulsa and the 787 FLE in Malaysia.
djames225
djames225 2
Except those are already Boeing units. The others are units Sprit acquired after being spun out of Boeing.
pika1000
pika1000 1
Before I left Spirit about a year ago, there was talk of some Airbus parts going into Tulsa since they had the space to fill once the 747 was completed. I'm not sure if it materialized or not, I highly doubt it did, but there was sourcing on Airbus parts for Tulsa as well as Wichita. Neither location was 100% Boeing as of early 2023.
djames225
djames225 1
Both Tulsa and Wichata are from Boeing days. As stated, the others where the majority of the parts are from are post Boeing. I know a number of folks at Short Brothers who snicker when they hear the "Spirit designed this and that for the A220" when Short Brothers was already making the composite wings and fuselage pieces.

I believe the Witchat plants made companion pieces for Kinston fabrication. Airbus and Spirit opened that NC plant in 2010 so I highly doubt Airbus will just sit back and allow Boeing to saunter in.
mikehe
Mike Hindson-Evans 3
With all due respect to my transatlantic colleagues on this forum.

It is not the principle of distributed manufacturing. Airbus has made a great success from distributed manufacturing.

The Toulouse operation (mirrored in Alabama and China and with Bombardier Canada integrated) was originally piloted for the Concorde.

Looks to me like management or costcutting, not the principle.
21voyageur
21voyageur 2
And the purpose of cost-cutting was to improve profits and personal executive gain at any cost. Including safety. Too big to fail?
pbow
Paul Bowerman 1
Please, it is spelled "Wichita"
djames225
djames225 1
Sorry Paul..noticed my mistakes after I had posted but due to not having an edit function...
mikehe
Mike Hindson-Evans 0
A timely reminder that you shoukd check what you are producing before launching it on the unsuspecting public.

Oh, hang on....
tomballenger
Thomas Ballenger 1
I hate displaying my ignorance but would someone give me a brief explanation of the term 'hating optics'. Perhaps it is an inside joke?
GeorgeDinius
George Dinius 1
It looks bad.
SteveTarr
Steve Tarr 1
I'm not sure either but perhaps it means "we need to do this but hate what it will look like to other people" ie the general public with so many opinions about everything, the FAA with so many concerns about themselves and everyone, Boeing customers who need to fly these planes and buy more from some company ...
mikehe
Mike Hindson-Evans 0
Restricted measures in a British pub, maybe??
skyeagle
Yassine Cherfouni 1
“ ALWAYS Listen to the people from Whom you don’t want to hear from “

Boeing should think of tomorrow, The past can’t be Mended.

“ Should Just Recall The Max’s 37’s and Admit It Was a Wrong Decision to Allow The Aircraft to Fly “

It could not just Disregard concerns and reach The Opposite conclusion.

It was not a Magic Leap. Some Airline Executives Believe that The “ production of The Max was Rushed into delivery with its Ups and downs.

Boeing with its numerous Meetings and Brainstorming Resources were apparently not Enough to Stop The Mistrust And Regain It’s Name And Reputation.

Exceeding The Faults of What was Allowed to be rectified is little too late to be Rectified.

The contracts are at stake , Abiding By The Contracts is a serious business matter.

Rather than Making Profits , it May find itself losing Profits And losing Clients As Well.

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