Business Case Studies, Managing in Troubled Times Case Study, Airbus A380 Delay, What Went Wrong?

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Managing in Troubled Times Case Study

Case Title:

Airbus A380 Delay: What Went Wrong?

Publication Year : 2006

Authors: Taranjeet Chawla, Kumar Satyaki Ray

Industry: Aircrafts and Ship Building

Region:US Europe

Case Code: TRT0053K

Teaching Note: Not Available

Structured Assignment: Not Available

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After Airbus announced a delay in the deliveries of its forthcoming A380, the biggest passenger jet ever made, in June 2006, it raised an alarm for the aviation world, especially for the customers of A380. Prior to this, in 2005, the European plane manufacturer had already extended its delivery schedule by six months. The company cited some production issues as reason for the delay. However, industry watchers suspected that there was more to the story than mere production issues. While the panicked customers were considering claiming compensation for the delay (some even were planning to cancel the orders), analysts wondered what caused the crisis and how Airbus was going to overcome it. Some also believed that the crisis at Airbus was a golden opportunity for Boeing to regain its leadership position.

The case tries to highlight Airbus’ problems and raises a question regarding how it could sort out its problems. It also discusses about Boeing’s ability to capitalise on the opportunity.

Pedagogical Objectives:

  • To understand the reasons that caused delay in launching the new aircraft A380
  • To understand the implications of delay in launching new products and thecomplexities involved therein
  • To know in detail about the development of A380, the world’s largest passenger aircraft
  • To assess how Airbus planned to deal with the situation.

Keywords : Airbus; Boeing; Commercial aircraft; A380; Superjumbo; Dreamliner; European Aeronautic Defence and Space (EADS); A350; Boeing 787; Noel Forgeard; Singapore Airlines; Managing in Troubled Times Case Study; Emirates


  • Introduction
  • 'Project a380'
  • A380 delay: what went wrong?
  • Boeing: feasting on airbus famine?
  • What next?

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