The aviation world is facing the same questions throughout the years: Boeing or Airbus? Which of the two is better? These questions still have no right answers. This is primarily because both of these aircraft models are exceptional in their own right. Different factors must be taken into account whilst conducting a competitive analysis of the two. This is the reason why a definitive answer is yet to be found. However, here we will try to investigate the features of these aircrafts and how they are positioned with respect to certain defined factors.
Boeing was the world’s oldest aircraft manufacturer and enjoyed an unprecedented monopoly for more than 50 years in the aviation industry. In 1970, however, the first major competitor, the Airbus, was manufactured and started to take the world by storm. Ever since the introduction of the Airbus, the Boeing faced a stern competition that is still going strong till date.
The analysis of Boeing’s competitors is now done keeping in mind certain factors. These factors are:
Both Boeing and Airbus now completely dominate the overall market with 99% combined market share, giving little to no chance to new entrants. However, it has been observed that over the past few years, Airbus has eaten Boeing’s market share. By 2018, Boeing had delivered over 10,000 of the 737 model aircraft since 1968. Airbus on the other hand, sold more than 8,000 units in the same time period. However, it must be kept in mind that Airbus started selling in 1988. So, Airbus has an advantage over Boeing in this department.
Airbus’ revenues are better diversified and are far from other competitors. The Boeing has a similar story but its chunk of revenues is concentrated more in the US. As far as the overall revenue is concerned, from 2015, Boeing has seen a significantly greater increase compared to Airbus. Its revenues have grown three times faster compared to the Airbus, over the past five years. Boeing also has better diversified risk. This is because Boeing has its revenue divided more equally amongst the categories of civilian aircrafts, commercial aircrafts and helicopters, as compared to the Airbus which is more dependent on civilian aircrafts only.
As far as technical issues are concerned, Airbus has not faced many major groundings. Only a temporary grounding of 14 Airbus A320 Neo Aircraft took place in India. Boeing, on the contrary, had to face two significantly major groundings. Its entire fleet was grounded back in March 2019 because of two air crashes. The company faced major losses then and also had to deal with many cancelations in the following months. These events tell us that the Airbus is considered more technically safe and reliable.
Boeing has been ahead of Airbus in terms of research and development. It has made more innovated products over the past and continues to do so. However, it must be noted that Airbus is now investing much more than Boeing so that it could improve its products. The impact of these investments would be seen clearly in the years to come.