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The Editor’s Corner #8 – O’Leary Is Gunning For Another Cheap Boeing Order

LONDON – It’s clear from Ryanair’s GCEO Michael O’Leary’s latest attacks on Boeing, that he is gunning for another cheap Boeing order. Welcome to the latest edition of The Editor’s Corner.

The Editor’s Corner is an op-ed series from AviationSource Editor-in-Chief James Field, who is going to give his thoughts (Maybe controversial) on all things going on in the aviation industry.

In case you have missed the last seven, feel free to browse through them before you continue to read this piece:

  1. The Editor’s Corner #1: The Industry Isn’t Ready for Summer 2022 Demand
  2. The Editor’s Corner #2: JetBlue’s Offer for Spirit Airlines Will Change The American Airline Dynamic
  3. The Editor’s Corner #3: Boris Johnson’s Damage To The Aviation Sector is Another Reason for Resignation
  4. The Editor’s Corner #4: PLAY Will Transform The Market with a Post-Pandemic Edge
  5. The Editor’s Corner #5: Detriment of the Boeing 737 MAX & 787 Is Causing a 777X-Based Aftershock
  6. The Editor’s Corner #6: Qantas’ Plans For The Future Will Turn Around Negative Times
  7. The Editor’s Corner #7: The P2F Market Is Hotting Up…

James will be starting things off with his next topic being: O’Leary Is Gunning For Another Cheap Boeing Order

O’Leary Is Gunning For Another Cheap Boeing Order


It’s clear from Ryanair’s GCEO Michael O’Leary’s attacks on Boeing, that he is gunning for another cheap Boeing order.

In his true typical form, gunning for another cheap It’s clear from Ryanair’s GCEO Michael O’Leary’s attacks on Boeing, that this is a clever form of strategy.

By attacking Boeing constantly, it is going to be in the American planemaker’s interest to give O’Leary a good enough deal to shut him up.

Boeing Needs As Much Good PR As It Can Get…

O’Leary said during the full-year earnings call for the Irish low-cost carrier that Boeing executives are “running around like headless chickens”, according to Bloomberg.

“Boeing needs a management reboot in Seattle, and either the existing management needs to up its game or they need to change the existing management”, he said in the call.

O’Leary saying something like this is not surprising. Back in April, he went as far as saying that Boeing needs more customers in Europe, and it even got to the point that he would consider an Airbus order “for a discount”.

Boeing has been constantly battered by O’Leary’s open criticism. Despite the entire industry giving the planemaker this level of feedback, O’Leary’s will always sting because of the person he is.

O’Leary Is Not Helping Their Case…

He is someone that doesn’t beat around the bush and will say it how it is.

This, of course, will be at a detriment to Boeing, especially when they are trying to generate as much sales momentum as possible ahead of the Farnborough Air Show in nearly two months’ time.

To substantiate this view, this is why O’Leary is not helping the Boeing cause. As someone who has ordered hundreds of aircraft from the planemaker, it is clear that he is wanting a significant discount.

And O’Leary isn’t wrong. The 737 MAX 10 looks set to be delayed alongside the 777X due to overall delays in the entire company that is going to push everything closer to break-even than profit.

Boeing May Need To Put Their Foot Down…

There is also the argument that Boeing could shut O’Leary down and tell him to go elsewhere, especially with the high number of discounts it has probably had to give to its other customers amid delivery delays.

Considering O’Leary is being this vocal at a point where Boeing doesn’t have any leverage, this means the American planemaker may need to create some.

Having that level of integrity may be what the manufacturer needs in order to bolster its position further on the PR front.

However, this can always backfire.

Reduction in Customers May Give Them No Choice…

That being said, O’Leary is clever because Boeing is in need of business. Especially on the commercial front.

If they don’t offer discounts, then we can see other customers going elsewhere for their aircraft. We saw this with Jet2 going to the A321neo instead of the 737 MAX.

Boeing needs to do absolutely everything they can, and maybe if O’Leary is sniffing around for a discount, maybe Boeing can tie that in with a further major commitment for a couple hundred MAX 10s?

Either way, Boeing needs to think fast and capitalize on what they have got at present.

Overall: The O’Leary-Boeing Battle Will Be A Close One…

With The Editor’s Corner being an op-ed series, here is my overall take on this battle between O’Leary and a multi-billion dollar manufacturer.

This is going to be an interesting battle to watch, particularly as we approach the Farnborough Air Show.

All of this could be a smokescreen for what could be a successful sales campaign from Boeing.

The Farnborough Air Show is going to be a good indicator of whether Boeing is broken, or whether they are slowly on the mend.

What we do know, is that Boeing needs to walk away from these battles in a good condition, otherwise they will never catch back up to Airbus.

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