Friday, June 12, 2015

Safran: Too early to commit more

France's aerospace group Safran said on Thursday it would focus on meeting a steep ramp-up in jet engine production before deciding whether to stretch its commitments further. Rivals Airbus and Boeing have plans with engine makers to raise production of their most popular models by some 20 percent to 50-52 planes a month by 2017-2018. They've also begun exploring further increases to lessen a backlog fueled by more efficient engine options such as the LEAP, co-produced by Safran and General Electric joint venture CFM International. "Concerning LEAP, we think we are at the maximum commitment we can make for the short term," Safran Chief Executive Philippe Petitcolin said. Airbus said last month it was leaning towards a new A320 jet output hike, mentioning figures as high as 63 planes a month. (Source: Reuters, 06/11/15) Gulf Coast note: The new A320 assembly line in Mobile, Ala., will play a role in reducing the backlog. Safran also has an engineering operation in Mobile, not far from the Airbus complex. Previous