Boeing Co. releases Q3 earnings, discusses union in S.C.

By Matt Tomsic
mtomsic@scbiznews.com
Published Oct. 24, 2012

The Boeing Co. announced third-quarter earnings rose 10% to $1.7 billion today, and its CEO discussed the attention Boeing South Carolina is receiving from the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers.

Boeing revenues were $20 billion, up 21% compared to the prior-year quarter. Boeing Commercial Airplanes, the business group that includes Boeing South Carolina, reported revenues of $12.2 billion and earnings of $1.2 billion. That represents a 28% jump in revenues and 6% increase in earnings for the business group.

The company delivered 149 airplanes during the third quarter, including the first Lowcountry-built 787, which CEO Jim McNerney called “a historic moment for Boeing and our customers.”

McNerney also addressed the attention Boeing South Carolina is receiving from the Machinists union, which hosted an informational meeting on Oct. 16 for Boeing South Carolina employees. Between 75 and 100 employees attended, and a spokesman said the union would host more meetings.

McNerney said he didn’t think the union would hold an election at Boeing South Carolina within the next year.

“We’re committed to working with our employees down in Charleston,” he said. “It’s not clear to us that they need representation. We like dealing directly with our employees.”

McNerney and Greg Smith, the company’s CFO, also discussed the delivery outlook for 787s during the conference call.

Boeing expects to deliver between 70 to 85 787s and 747-8s split evenly during 2012, and Smith said the company is in line with those expectations, though deliveries are a little more weighted to the 787s. This year, Boeing has delivered 23 Dreamliners, including a handful from the North Charleston delivery center. The company has also delivered 21 747s, which leaves a balance between 26 and 41 deliveries.

“We think we’re going to be in the range we provided,” Smith said. “If we can get more out, we will. But that’s our current plan to execute within that range.”

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