Will 2023 Be the Year of the Boeing Bounce Back?
Photo by H. Kamran on Unsplash
After Netflix released the damning documentary Downfall: The Case Against Boeing, many questioned how the American industry giant would repair its public image. With the well-documented malfeasance hopefully behind the company, how would Boeing move forward?
A few recent news stories put Boeing in the news once again, but this time for better reasons. 2023 may then represent a bounce back for Boeing, in the eyes of the press, the public, and its customers.
United Airlines’ Big Purchase
United Airlines completed a deal to purchase 100 Boeing aircraft with the option to purchase 100 additional planes. The Boeing 787 Dreamliners will replace United’s old fleet of Boeing 767s and some of the 777s.
The older planes will be retired for the new Dreamliners, which will save money by being more fuel efficient. After United returned to profitability from the pandemic, the new purchase of Boeing Dreamliners represents a big commitment from United.
United’s CEO Scott Kirby said that because the carrier already had an entire wide-body fleet of Boeing planes, it didn’t make business sense to suddenly switch over to purchase from Airbus.
Boeing will begin delivery of the Dreamliners in 2024.
Air India’s Dual Purchase
Air India is about to close their own deal for 220 Boeings. While the United deal was strictly for the wide-body Dreamliner, the Air India deal would include 190 narrow-body 737 MAX and 30 wide-body 787s.
Air India is not going exclusive with Boeing like United. They will still be purchasing a couple hundred A320s from Airbus. But the Air India and Boeing deal is another strong signal that confidence in Boeing has not waned.
First Net-Zero Transatlantic Flight
Another PR coup for Boeing may be Virgin Atlantic’s plan to fly a Boeing 787 from London to New York in “the first net-zero transatlantic flight”.
“Net-zero”, in this case, refers to the carbon emissions and the efforts of the aviation industry to reduce its impact on the atmosphere and climate.
Virgin Atlantic’s proposed flight in 2023 would be fueled entirely by Sustainable Aviation Fuel, or SAF. This fuel would be made up of cooking oils and fats and other agricultural waste products, which could cut the carbon emissions of the flight at an average of 80%.
A big victory for sustainable fuels would definitely put Boeing back in the press with some positive news. And it’s looking like a good year for the company.