Boeing looks set to beat Airbus in new plane deal with IAG


Willie Walsh, CEO of the International Airlines Group

Simon Dawson | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Willie Walsh, CEO of the International Airlines Group

British Airways’ parent company IAG has offered a big hint that Boeing is in pole position to win a new order for wide-body aircraft.

The share price of IAG has risen more than 4 percent in European trade Friday after the company reported 280 million euros ($335 million) of operating profit for the first quarter, easily beating forecasts.

Speaking in a call following the results, CEO Willie Walsh told analysts that capital expenditure on planes in 2018 was likely to remain at around 2.8 billion euros.

Walsh added that he was in talks with both Boeing and Airbus on new wide-body aircraft, but hinted heavily that a fresh deal with the U.S. firm was close.

“We have had very constructive dialogue with Boeing on wide-body aircraft. We will be meeting them in the next few days,” he said.

The airline chief said that he was also having “very good dialogue” with U.S. firm General Electric over new engines for both narrow and wide-body planes.

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