In the midst of the crisis, the bosses of Boeing decided to make a strong announcement. The American giant, which has asked for federal government aid to cope with the coronavirus pandemic, announced on Friday March 20 that it will suspend dividend payments and cease all buyback programs of its own shares until further notice. Chief Executive Officer David Calhoun and Chairman of the Board of Directors Larry Kellner also waive their respective compensation until the end of the year.
David Calhoun, 62, who took over the reins of Boeing on January 13 to replace Dennis Muilenburg, who was sacked in December, was to receive a base salary of $ 1.4 million in 2020. He could claim an additional bonus of 7 million if he managed to convince the civil aviation authorities to lift the flight ban affecting since March 13, 2019 the old best-seller 737 MAX following two close accidents that killed 346 people.
$ 60 billion
Boeing is not currently suspending production in its factories, saying “deploy all (its) resources to continue to support (its) operations, (its) workforce and (its) customers and to preserve the continuity of (its) chain of supply throughout this Covid-19 “crisis. This latest decision is a surprise because the manufacturer is now recording very little revenue, the airlines having suspended all reception of aircraft and having postponed orders for new aircraft.
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It is nevertheless likely to be welcomed by Congress and the White House, which disagree on the form that a possible rescue of Boeing, the leading American exporting group, could take. The aircraft manufacturer is asking the federal government for at least $ 60 billion for him and his supplier chain to avoid a cascade of bankruptcies and mass layoffs. According to Boeing, the American aeronautical sector supports 2.5 million jobs and 17,000 subcontractors.
Elected Democrats are particularly opposed to what they call a blank check, because, they argue, it was the choices of Boeing that plunged him into the current bad patch. In addition to the coronavirus, Boeing remains affected by the setbacks of the MAX, which have already cost it more than $ 18 billion, but the bill is likely to climb, due to the uncertainties surrounding the return to service of this aircraft and the complaints of families. accident victims.