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Airbus’ H1 Figures Show Positive Trend in Aviation Industry Recovery

  • 316 commercial aircraft delivered in H1 2023
  • Revenues € 27.7 billion; EBIT Adjusted € 2.6 billion
  • EBIT (reported) € 1.9 billion; EPS (reported) € 1.94
  • Free cash flow before M&A and customer financing € 1.6 billion
  • Guidance maintained

Airbus SE (stock exchange symbol: AIR) has made public its consolidated financial results for the first half of the year (H1), culminating on 30 June 2023.

“During the first half of 2023, we progressed well across our businesses in an operational environment that remains complex. Our commercial aircraft are in strong demand, as demonstrated by more than 800 orders announced at the Paris Air Show. This demand is driven both by growth and fleet replacement as airlines invest in more fuel-efficient fleets,” said Guillaume Faury, Airbus Chief Executive Officer. “Based on this H1 performance, we maintain our 2023 guidance.”

Airbus: Details of H1 Aircraft Orders

In a significant uptick from previous numbers, Airbus registered 1,080 gross commercial aircraft orders in the first half of 2023, a substantial surge from the 442 aircraft orders in H1 2022. The company also reported robust net orders of 1,044 aircraft after accounting for cancellations, far surpassing the 259 aircraft net orders in the same period of the previous year. This impressive performance pushed the order backlog to an unprecedented 7,967 commercial aircraft at the end of June 2023. 

On the other hand, Airbus Helicopters experienced a slight dip in their performance, with 131 net orders compared to 163 units in H1 2022. These orders, however, showcased a healthy diversity, spreading across different programs and incorporating 19 units of the in-demand H160. 

Meanwhile, Airbus Defence and Space registered a respectable order intake by the value of € 6.0 billion, a marginal decrease from the € 6.5 billion recorded in H1 2022. Noteworthy in this segment were orders for 4 new-build and 5 converted A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport aircraft from Canada, a testament to the continued international demand for Airbus’ defense solutions.

Unfolding Airbus’ H1 Earnings

In a year-on-year comparison, Airbus has experienced an encouraging revenue growth of 11 percent, with the figures reaching an impressive €27.7 billion in this term, compared to €24.8 billion in H1 2022. Demonstrating a robust operational performance, Airbus has delivered a total of 316 commercial aircraft (25 A220s, 256 A320 Family, 14 A330s and 21 A350s) during this period, showing an increase from H1 2022 deliveries (297)(1)(2)

Revenues generated by Airbus’ commercial aircraft activities increased 16 percent, mainly reflecting the higher number of deliveries.

Airbus Helicopters deliveries rose to 145 units in the first half of the year, a substantial increase from 115 units during the same period in 2022. This growth was predominantly fueled by the robust performance in the Light helicopter segment. Moreover, the Division’s revenues witnessed a notable 16 percent ascent, a testament to their robust performance across various programs and services.

Revenues at Airbus Defence and Space decreased by 8 percent, mainly driven by delays in Space Systems and delivery phasing in Military Air Systems. Three A400M military airlifters were delivered in H1 2023.

Airbus’ Adjusted EBIT – A Closer Look

The consolidated EBIT Adjusted – excluding material charges or profits from provisions related to programs, restructuring, foreign exchange impacts, and capital gains/losses from business acquisitions and disposals – stood at € 2,618 million. This figure comes close to the H1 2022 result of € 2,645 million, reflecting the company’s underlying business margin.

Airbus’ Commercial Aircraft Activities

Despite slight fluctuations, Airbus’ commercial aircraft activities’ EBIT Adjusted remained largely steady, posting at €2,256 million in H1 2023, down marginally from €2,276 million in H1 2022. This stability was maintained by an uptick in deliveries, bolstered by a more favorable hedge rate, even as investments were channeled toward futuristic preparations. The H1 2022 figures were also influenced by a unique, non-recurring positive impact from retirement obligations, which was somewhat offset by the effects of international sanctions against Russia. In H1 2023, Airbus made significant strides in compliance-related matters, leading to the release of provisions.

With an unwavering focus on its A220 program, Airbus is steadily advancing towards achieving a monthly production rate of 14 aircraft by mid-decade. The progress on the A320 Family program is equally commendable, with the company on track to reach a production rate of 75 aircraft per month by 2026. This target rate now serves as the pivotal reference point for Airbus and its supply chain, and tactical adjustments to production planning will persistently be implemented as needed to meet this goal. The recent inauguration of a new A321 capable final assembly line in Toulouse stands as a testament to the ongoing evolution of Airbus’ global industrial system. As for the A321XLR, the flight test program is making steady strides toward its anticipated entry into service in Q2 2024. 

As for widebody aircraft, Airbus steadfastly aims to achieve a production rate of 4 for the A330 in 2024 and a rate of 9 for the A350 by the close of 2025. 

Airbus Helicopter Activities 

The EBIT Adjusted for Airbus Helicopters demonstrated a robust increase, reaching € 274 million in H1 2022, up from € 215 million. This upswing is a testament to the exceptional performance across all programs and services, further bolstered by net positive non-recurring elements in H1 2022. 

Airbus Defence and Space 

Conversely, the EBIT Adjusted for Airbus Defence and Space experienced a decline, falling to € 78 million in H1 2022 from € 155 million. The primary cause of this downturn is the decrease in revenues coupled with modified assumptions on certain long-term contracts. This aligns with the challenging environment pervading the Division’s Space business, which also saw net positive non-recurring elements in H1 2022.

Progress continues to be made on the A400M program, with development activities diligently marching towards the achievement of the revised capability roadmap. Retrofit activities have been making headway in harmonious alignment with the expectations of the customer. Despite the inherent risks that persist with the qualification of technical capabilities, associated costs, the operational reliability of the aircraft, cost reductions, and securing the overall volume according to the revised baseline, the first half of 2023 did not experience any further net material impact. 

Airbus Rising R&D Expenses

On the financial front, self-financed R&D expenses for Airbus displayed a significant rise, aggregating to a total of € 1,431 million. This represents a noteworthy increase from H1 2022’s total of € 1,256 million.

Airbus’ Consolidated EBIT

The consolidated EBIT (reported) for Airbus reached a total of € 1,887 million. This represents a downturn from the previous year’s H1 score of € 2,579 million, with net Adjustments resulting in a reduction of € -731 million. 

These Adjustments can be broken down as follows: 

  • The bulk, € -651 million, can be attributed to the dollar pre-delivery payment mismatch and balance sheet revaluation. The second quarter bore the brunt of this with a € -291 million hit. This significant figure is predominantly due to the phasing impact that arises from the disparity between the transaction date and the delivery date;
  • A further € -34 million was lost due to the transformation of the Aerostructures division, with € -25 million of this happening in Q2;
  • The remaining € -46 million covers other costs, including compliance, with € -32 million of these costs incurred in Q2.

A Slight Dip Compared to H1 2022

The H1 2023 financial results reveal a slight dip in Airbus’ performance, with the reported earnings standing at €102 million, compared to €107 million in H1 2022. This primarily stems from the positive impact of revaluating select equity investments, which the net interest result has partially counteracted, and negative repercussions from revaluating certain financial instruments. The consolidated net income(3) has also experienced a decrease, amounting to €1,526 million, as opposed to €1,901 million in H1 2022. This reflects on the earnings per share, which currently stand at €1.94, compared to €2.42 in the previous year.

Furthermore, the consolidated free cash flow before M&A and customer financing has seen a reduction, standing at €1,574 million, a decrease from the previous year’s €1,955 million. This can be attributed to the progress in deliveries, coupled with an increase in the inventory due to the ramp-up across various programs. Nevertheless, this downturn has been somewhat offset by favorable timing of receipts and payments. 

The consolidated free cash flow has also witnessed a decrease, down to €1,474 million from €1,646 million in H1 2022. The gross cash position has slightly diminished to €22.9 billion at the end of June 2023, compared to €23.6 billion at the end of 2022. This has resulted in a consolidated net cash position of €9.1 billion, down from €9.4 billion at the end of the previous year.

Airbus Outlook 

Airbus maintains the guidance issued in February 2023. 

In establishing the foundation for its 2023 outlook, Airbus predicates its assumptions on the absence of further disruptions impacting the global economy, air traffic, supply chain, internal operations, and its capacity to fulfill product and service deliveries. 

It’s important to note that the 2023 guidance provided by Airbus does not account for any mergers and acquisitions (M&A). 

Given these conditions and assumptions, Airbus has set ambitious targets for 2023: 

  • The delivery of approximately 720 commercial aircraft;
  • An EBIT Adjusted figure reaching € 6.0 billion;
  • A Free Cash Flow, prior to any M&A and Customer Financing, of € 3.0 billion.

Consolidated Airbus – Half-Year (H1) 2023 Results

(Amounts in Euro)

Consolidated AirbusH1 2023H1 2022Change
Revenues, in millions


thereof defence, in millions










EBIT Adjusted, in millions2,6182,645-1%
EBIT (reported), in millions1,8872,579-27%
Research & Development expenses, in millions1,4311,256+14%
Net Income(3), in millions1,5261,901-20%
Earnings Per Share  1.942.42-20%
Free Cash Flow (FCF), in millions1,4741,646-10%
Free Cash Flow before M&A, in millions1,5321,665-8%
Free Cash Flow before M&A and Customer Financing, in millions1,5741,955-19%
Consolidated Airbus30 June 202331 Dec 2022Change
Net Cash position, in millions of Euro9,0649,431-4%
Number of employees141,799134,267+6%
By Business SegmentRevenuesEBIT (reported)
(Amounts in millions of Euro)H1 2023H1 2022ChangeH1 2023H1 2022Change
Airbus Helicopters3,1942,744+16%267215+24%
Airbus Defence and Space4,6535,056-8%87-113
By Business SegmentEBIT Adjusted
(Amounts in millions of Euro)H1 2023H1 2022Change
Airbus Helicopters274215+27%
Airbus Defence and Space78155-50%
By Business SegmentOrder Intake (net)Order Book
 H1 2023H1 2022Change30 June 202330 June 2022Change
Airbus, in units1,044259+303%7,9677,046+13%
Airbus Helicopters, in  units131163-20%743787-6%
Airbus Defence and Space, in millions of Euro6,0386,534-8%N/AN/A    N/A

Consolidated Airbus – Second Quarter (Q2) 2023 Results

(Amounts in Euro) 

Consolidated AirbusQ2 2023Q2 2022Change
Revenues, in millions15,90012,810+24%
EBIT Adjusted, in millions1,8451,382+34%
EBIT (reported), in millions1,4971,150+30%
Net Income(3), in millions1,060682+55%
Earnings Per Share 1.340.87+54%
By Business SegmentRevenuesEBIT (reported)
(Amounts in millions of



Q2 2023Q2 2022ChangeQ2 2023Q2 2022Change
Airbus Helicopters1,5961,479+8%111125-11%
Airbus Defence and Space2,3542,603-10%51-208
By Business SegmentEBIT Adjusted
(Amounts in millions of Euro)Q2 2023Q2 2022Change
Airbus Helicopters118125-6%
Airbus Defence and Space4249-14%

Q2 2023 revenues increased by 24 percent, mainly reflecting the higher commercial aircraft deliveries compared to the second quarter of 2022.   
Q2 2023 EBIT Adjusted increased by 34 percent, mainly reflecting the increased commercial aircraft deliveries, a positive year-on-year impact from currency hedging and the release of provisions following progress made on compliance related topics. 
Q2 2023 EBIT (reported) of € 1,497 million included net Adjustments of € -348 million. Net Adjustments in the second quarter of 2022 amounted to € -232 million.  
Q2 2023 Net Income(3) of € 1,060 million mainly reflects the EBIT (reported), € -47 million from the financial result and € -436 million from income tax.

EBIT (reported) / EBIT Adjusted Reconciliation

The table below reconciles EBIT (reported) with EBIT Adjusted.

Consolidated Airbus

(Amounts in millions of Euro)

H1 2023
EBIT (reported)1,887
$ PDP mismatch/balance sheet revaluation-651
Aerostructures transformation-34
EBIT Adjusted2,618

 Airbus H1 Glossary 

EBITThe Company continues to use the term EBIT (Earnings before interest and taxes). It is identical to Profit before finance cost and income taxes as defined by IFRS Rules. 
AdjustmentAdjustment, an alternative performance measure, is a term used by the Company which includes material charges or profits caused by movements in provisions related to programmes, restructuring or foreign exchange impacts as well as capital gains/losses from the disposal and acquisition of businesses.
EBIT AdjustedThe Company uses an alternative performance measure, EBIT Adjusted, as a key indicator capturing the underlying business margin by excluding material charges or profits caused by movements in provisions related to programmes, restructuring or foreign exchange impacts as well as capital gains/losses from the disposal and acquisition of businesses. 
EPS AdjustedEPS Adjusted is an alternative performance measure of basic earnings per share as reported whereby the net income as the numerator does include Adjustments. For reconciliation, see the Analyst presentation.
Gross cash positionThe Company defines its consolidated gross cash position as the sum of (i) cash and cash equivalents and (ii) securities (all as recorded in the consolidated statement of financial position).
Net cash positionThe Company defines its consolidated net cash position as the sum of (i) cash and cash equivalents and (ii) securities, minus (iii) financing liabilities, plus or minus (iiii) interest rate contracts related to fair value hedges (all as recorded in the consolidated statement of financial position).
Free Cash Flow (FCF)For the definition of the alternative performance measure Free Cash Flow, see the Universal Registration Document, MD&A section It is a key indicator which allows the Company to measure the amount of cash flow generated from operations after cash used in investing activities.
FCF before M&AFCF before M&A refers to Free Cash Flow as defined in the Universal Registration Document, MD&A section adjusted for net proceeds from disposals and acquisitions. It is an alternative performance measure and key indicator that reflects free cash flow excluding those cash flows resulting from acquisitions and disposals of businesses.
FCF before M&A and Customer FinancingFCF before M&A and Customer Financing refers to Free Cash Flow before mergers and acquisitions adjusted for cash flow related to aircraft financing activities. It is an alternative performance measure and indicator that may be used occasionally by the Company in its financial guidance, especially when there is higher uncertainty around customer financing activities.


  1. Before a reduction of two aircraft previously recorded as sold in December 2021 for which a transfer was not possible due to international sanctions against Russia.
  2. Two A350s delivered on operating lease without revenue recognition at delivery.
  3. Airbus SE continues to use the term Net Income/Loss. It is identical to Profit/Loss for the period attributable to equity owners of the parent as defined by IFRS Rules.

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