Boeing 2009 orders down, but backlog remains large

Boeing recorded only 142 net orders in 2009, but has a strong backlog of 3,375 airplanes.

The Boeing Co. (Seattle, Wash., USA) announced on Jan. 7 that it recorded 481 commercial airplane deliveries in 2009, matching the company guidance of 480-485 airplanes. The Commercial Airplanes backlog remains strong at 3,375 airplanes. Boeing registered 263 gross and 142 net commercial orders for the year as air travel and freight declined and carriers worldwide experienced severe economic challenges.

The Next-Generation 737 continued its reign as the industry workhorse with 372 deliveries. The airplane also topped Boeing's order book with 197 gross orders as carriers chose the 737's efficiency and versatility for future fleet needs. The 777 led Boeing's twin-aisle programs as operators chose the most reliable and efficient twin-aisle jet flying today.

The global recession presided as an oppressive market reality in 2009, driving many carriers to re-evaluate their near- and medium-term fleet requirements. Program orders, deliveries and backlog at the end of 2009 were as follows:

             Gross Orders     Net Orders     Deliveries     Backlog Units
    737           197             178                372                2,076
    777            30              19                  88                  281
    747             5               2                    8                    108
    767             7               2                    13                  59
    787            24             -59                  N/A               851

First flight of the 787 Dreamliner took place Dec. 15, with first delivery scheduled for fourth quarter 2010. The 747-8 Freighter is slated for first flight early this year with first delivery planned for fourth quarter 2010. Delivery of the 747-8 Intercontinental passenger airplane is planned for fourth-quarter 2011.

"2009 was not without its challenges but it also was a year of exciting achievements for our company and our industry," said Jim Albaugh, Boeing Commercial Airplanes president and chief executive officer. "With signs of economic recovery emerging in 2010, we look forward to better days ahead."