BA stock traded higher on a down day after the company announced a second 777X had made its first flight.
Boeing said it conducted a productive and successful first flight of the second 777X airplane. Capt. Ted Grady, 777X project pilot, and Capt. Van Chaney, 777/777X chief pilot, flew for 2 hours and 58 minutes over Washington state before landing at Seattle’s Boeing Field at 2:02 p.m. Pacific. Designated WH002, this airplane is the second of four in a dedicated flight test fleet and will test handling characteristics and other aspects of airplane performance. An array of equipment, sensors and monitoring devices throughout the cabin allows the onboard team to document and evaluate the airplane’s response to test conditions in real time. The 777X test plan lays out a comprehensive series of tests and conditions on the ground and in the air to demonstrate the safety and reliability of the design. To date, crews have flown the first airplane nearly 100 hours at a variety of flap settings, speeds, altitudes and system settings as part of the initial evaluation of the flight envelope. With initial airworthiness now demonstrated, the team can safely add personnel to monitor testing onboard instead of relying solely on a ground-based telemetry station, unlocking testing at greater distances.
Boeing also announced tonight a bond offering that includes debt instruments with an aggregate principal amount of $25B across seven tranches with maturities ranging from three to 40 years. In a statement Boeing said, “We’re pleased with the response to our bond offering today, which is one of several steps we’re taking to keep liquidity flowing through our business and the 17,000 companies in our industry’s supply chain. The robust demand for the offering reflects strong support for the long-term strength of Boeing and the aviation industry. It is also in part a result of the confidence in the market created by the CARES Act and federal support programs that have been put in place – a testament to the Administration, Congress and the Federal Reserve. As a result of the response, and pending the closure of this transaction expected Monday, May 4, we do not plan to seek additional funding through the capital markets or the U.S. government options at this time. We will continue to assess our liquidity position as the health crisis and our dynamic business environment evolve.”
Boeing was awarded a $112M modification to a previously awarded, fixed-price-incentive-firm-target contract. This modification exercises options to procure 16 infrared search and track Block II low rate initial production IV units; four for the Navy and 12 for the government of Australia. Work is expected to be complete by June 2023. FY20 aircraft procurement funds in the amount of $28M and Foreign Military Sales funds in the amount of $84M will be obligated at time of award, none of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Systems Command is the contracting activity.