In a possible effort to sugarcoat its reveal of a 53% drop in quarterly profit, Boeing announced Wednesday that it intends to obtain regulatory approval for the 737 Max by the end of the year, according to Reuters.
“Our top priority remains the safe return to service of the 737 Max, and we’re making steady progress, Boeing President and CEO Dennis Muilenberg said in the statement.
Boeing Co. has suffered a 22% drop in revenue in the third quarter, reported MarketWatch last week, also noting that analysts expect the aviation company will rake in only $19.61 billion in revenue for Q3 versus $25.15 billion from last year’s third quarter.
It’s not just Boeing’s bottom line that has been severely impacted by the 737 Max’s suspension from the skies. Southwest, the US’ largest domestic carrier, purchased 34 of the now-grounded aircraft to replace its oldest jets and planned to have the aircraft account for nearly 8% of its capacity by July 2019, according to analyst Joe DeNardi.
The Verge reported Wednesday that Boeing has earmarked more than $5 billion overall to cover 737 Max-related reimbursement fees to airlines, but the aviation company’s repayment estimates may not necessarily match up with projected costs for each carrier - meaning travelers may have to cough up more cash per ticket in months to come.
The monthslong fallout from the two Boeing 737 Max crashes that resulted in the deaths of 346 people has also caused a shakeup in the company’s executive division.
Muilenburg, who was recently called upon by the Federal Aviation Administration to explain the discovery of damning documents which identified early issues with the 737 Max’s unique software, was removed from the company’s board of directors earlier this month to allow him to “focus full time on running the company." Less than two weeks later, Boeing announced Stan Deal would replace Kevin McAllister as president and CEO of the company’s Commercial Airplanes division.