Talks for the deal between Airbus and Bombardier first started in August. Enders said the deal was different from an earlier round of talks in 2015, when he abruptly ordered an end to negotiations. He said the CSeries’ has since been certified, entered service and was performing well. “It’s an entirely different situation,” he said.
Delta Air Lines, which ordered 75 CSeries planes, said after the announcement that it looked forward to introducing the planes into its fleet. Under the deal, Bombardier will own about 31 percent, while Investissement Québec, the investment arm of the province of Quebec, will hold 19 percent. In 2015, Quebec took a 49 percent stake in the CSeries program for $1 billion, although its stake was more recently diluted to 38 percent.
Quebec’s largest pension fund, which holds a 30 percent stake in Bombardier’s rail division, said the decision strengthened the company and improved its growth prospects. Bombardier is in the middle of a five-year turnaround plan after considering bankruptcy because of a cash-crunch as it developed multiple plane programs simultaneously, including the CSeries.
The deal also provides Airbus warrants exercisable to acquire up to 100 million Class B Shares of Bombardier. Airbus will provide procurement, sales and marketing, and customer support expertise to CSALP, the companies said.
There will be no cash contribution by any of the partners, nor will CSALP assume any financial debt, they added. Bombardier expects a $400 million loss in commercial aircraft this year, but has set a breakeven target for 2020.