Boeing Co.’s biggest 777X customer is weighing whether to swap as many as a third of its orders for the smaller 787 Dreamliner, said a person familiar with the matter, adding to the uncertainty swirling around the behemoth jet’s future.
Gulf carrier Emirates is seeking to switch between 30 and 40 of its 115 commitments for the 777X to the Dreamliner as it calibrates fleet plans, said the person, who asked not to be identified discussing private considerations. The moves could further squeeze the profits of Boeing’s newest jet, which faces a lengthy regulatory review and design changes.
The U.S. planemaker signaled Monday that it’s at risk of losing nearly 40% its 777X order haul because the latest delay to the plane’s debut — now slated for late 2023 — gives customers the right to walk away from sales contracts.
Boeing lowered the 777X backlog to just 191 jets in a regulatory filing, far fewer than the 309 firm orders listed on its website. The drop is due to an accounting standard that requires sales at risk of falling through to be removed from backlog, the company said in an email.