Boeing reports $23.8B in revenue for 4Q, keeps focus on commercial airplanes

Boeing S.C. employees work on a 787 on the floor of the company's final assembly plant in North Charleston. (Photo by Kim McManus)
Boeing S.C. employees work on a 787 on the floor of the company's final assembly plant in North Charleston. (Photo by Kim McManus)
By Liz Segrist
lsegrist@scbiznews.com
Published Jan. 29, 2014

Boeing Co. reported revenue of $23.8 billion for the fourth quarter of 2013, up 7% from a year ago.

Boeing CEO Jim McNerney
Boeing CEO Jim McNerney

Boeing’s Commercial Airplanes’ business increased production rates and accelerated delivery of its backlog in 2013 while focusing on the launch of the 787-10 and 777X models.

For the 787 program, McNerney said there’s “still more customer-by-customer variation than we’d like,” but Boeing has made progress “on improving dispatch reliability.” Several 787 Dreamliners have experienced battery issues in the past year. The 787 program is at 98% reliability on average, McNerney said.

There’s “still more work to do on that one,” McNerney said during Boeing’s earnings call this morning.

During the year, the 787 program completed first flight of the 787-9, launched the 787-10 and began operating at a 10-per-month production rate in final assembly.

Boeing Commercial Airplanes fourth-quarter revenue increased 4% to $14.7 billion and full-year revenue increased to a record $53 billion.

Commercial Airplanes booked 465 net orders during the quarter and 1,355 during the year. Backlog includes 5,080 airplanes valued at a record $374 billion. In 2013, a record 648 commercial aircraft were delivered.

During the quarter, the company launched the 777X with 259 orders and commitments. Earlier this month, Boeing and the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers District 751 reached a contract extension to 2024 to secure 777X work in the Puget Sound region following months of dispute.

The 737 program delivered at a record production rate of 38 per month and secured nearly 1,800 firm orders for the 737 MAX since launch.

The aerospace giant’s earnings per share increased by 26% to $1.61 for the fourth quarter on a generally accepted accounting principles basis. Boeing’s core operating margin increased 0.9 points to 6.4% in the fourth quarter.

“Strong fourth-quarter results underscored an outstanding full year of core operating performance that drove record revenue and earnings and increased returns to shareholders,” Boeing Chairman and CEO Jim McNerney said.

Boeing reported GAAP operating earnings of $1.5 billion for the fourth quarter, up 7% from the year prior. This includes a $406 million noncash charge to settle litigation dating back to 1991 over a stealth fighter program that was later scrapped. The move retires a long-standing risk to Boeing, the company said.

For the full year of 2013, revenue rose 6% to a record $86.6 billion and GAAP earnings per share increased 17% to a record $5.96.

“For 2014, we remain focused on maintaining our commercial airplanes market leadership, strengthening and repositioning our defense, space and security business and continuing to meet the needs of our customers by improving productivity, executing to development plans and delivering our unmatched portfolio of innovative aerospace products and services,” McNerney said in a statement.

Reach Liz Segrist at 843-849-3119 or @lizsegrist on Twitter.

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