Airbus CEO Streiff quits after 3 months, job cuts loom
The ongoing saga of the A380 super-jumbo took another twist Monday when Christian Streiff, Airbus’ chief executive officer of three months, resigned amid reports of a row with parent company EADS.
In July, Streiff replaced Gustav Humbert, who quit the post following delays to the A380. The European aircraft maker last week announced yet another delay in its delivery schedule for the massive new plane, putting it back to October 2007 because of continuing problems with wiring harnesses.
Streiff was thought to have been pushing for more cash from EADS to speed up the faltering project.
EADS reacted by replacing Streiff with its co-CEO Louis Gallois, a former head of French state railway company SNCF. Gallois will retain his role at EADS.
As part of a restructuring program designed to create a single line of management between EADS and Airbus, all non-Airbus divisions will now report to EADS’s other co-CEO Tom Enders.
“The new management structure will allow, on the one hand, a leaner, more efficient corporate governance and, on the other hand, additional cost savings within the EADS group,” EADS said in a statement.
The delays to the A380 could cost Airbus about $6 billion with airlines demanding penalties for late deliveries.
Airbus has plans to cut its costs by $2 billion from 2010 but Gallois admitted that tough measures could come earlier, including the “eliminations of posts, and we will have to pose questions about sites.”
“There will be job losses,” Gallois said.