American Airlines extends Boeing 737 MAX-caused cancelations to June 5

American Airlines said Sunday it is extending the cancelations through June 5 from the earlier timeframe of April 24. (AP)
Updated 08 April 2019

American Airlines extends Boeing 737 MAX-caused cancelations to June 5

  • The airline acknowledged in a statement that the prolonged cancelations could bring disruption for some travelers
  • The Boeing-made MAX jets have been grounded in the US and elsewhere since mid-March, following two deadly crashes

WASHINGTON: American Airlines is extending by over a month its cancelations of about 90 daily flights as the troubled 737 MAX plane remains grounded by regulators.
American said Sunday it is extending the cancelations through June 5 from the earlier timeframe of April 24. The airline acknowledged in a statement that the prolonged cancelations could bring disruption for some travelers.
The Boeing-made MAX jets have been grounded in the US and elsewhere since mid-March, following two deadly crashes in Ethiopia and Indonesia. Airlines that own them have been scrambling other planes to fill some MAX flights while canceling others.
American Airlines Group Inc., the largest US airline by revenue, has 24 MAX jets in its fleet. The Ft. Worth, Texas-based airline said it is awaiting information from US regulators, and will contact customers affected by the cancelations with available re-bookings.
Boeing and the US Federal Aviation Administration said last week the company needs more time to finish changes in a flight-control system suspected of playing a role in the two crashes. That means airlines could be forced to park their MAX jets longer than they expected.
American said Sunday that by canceling the flights in advance, “we are able to provide better service to our customers with availability and re-booking options,” and to avoid last-minute flight disruptions.
American’s reservations staff will contact affected customers directly by email or phone, the airline said. “We know these cancelations and changes may affect some of our customers, and we are working to limit the impact to the smallest number of customers,” the statement said.
Boeing said Friday that it will cut production of the MAX jet, its best-selling plane, underscoring the mounting financial risk it faces the longer the airliner remains grounded.
Starting in mid-April, Boeing said, it will cut production of the plane to 42 from 52 planes per month so it can focus on fixing the flight-control software that has been implicated in the two crashes.
Preliminary investigations into the deadly accidents in Ethiopia and Indonesia found that faulty sensor readings erroneously triggered an anti-stall system that pushed down the plane’s nose. Pilots of each plane struggled in vain to regain control over the automated system.
In all, 346 people died in the crashes. Boeing faces a growing number of lawsuits filed by families of the victims.
The announcement to cut production came after Boeing acknowledged that a second software issue has emerged that needs fixing on the MAX — a discovery that explained why the aircraft maker had pushed back its ambitious schedule for getting the planes back in the air.


Struggling WeWork mulls bailout deals with SoftBank, JP Morgan

Updated 14 October 2019

Struggling WeWork mulls bailout deals with SoftBank, JP Morgan

TOKYO: Under-pressure start-up WeWork is considering two huge bailout plans including a cash injection that could see Japanese investment titan SoftBank take control of the firm, according to reports.
The office-sharing giant had been on course for a massive initial public offering until last month when questions began to be asked over its governance and profit outlook.
The firm’s valuation plunged from $47 billion in January to less than $20 billion in September and the listing plans have been dropped, while co-founder Adam Neumann stepped down as chief executive.
With New York-based parent company We Co. not expected to push for the IPO this year, the cash-strapped firm is looking for a financial lifeline.
The Wall Street Journal, New York Times and Bloomberg News cited unnamed sources close to the talks as saying SoftBank — the US firm’s biggest shareholder — had drawn up a proposal that gives it full control of WeWork.
The move would dilute the voting power of Neumann, who remains as chairman of the company he started in 2010 and also currently maintains control a majority of voting shares.
They also reported that WeWork is looking at a deal with Wall Street giant JP Morgan to raise $5 billion in debt, with the Times saying directors of We would be meeting as soon as Monday afternoon to discuss that.
“WeWork has retained a major Wall Street financial institution to arrange financing,” the Journal reported a company spokesman as saying.
“Approximately 60 financing sources have signed confidentiality agreements and are meeting with the company’s management and its bankers over the course of this past week and this coming week.”
The New York-based startup that launched in 2010 has touted itself as revolutionizing commercial real estate by offering shared, flexible workspace arrangements, and has operations in 111 cities in 29 countries.
However, the company, which lost $1.9 billion last year, has faced skepticism over its ability to make money, especially if the global economy slows significantly.