The numbers: EADS saw order intake for its Airbus division surge 496.3% from the first quarter of 2012, contributing to the firm’s total profits of €243 million ($315 million) for the quarter.
The takeaway: Orders for commercial aircraft are up, offsetting a decline in demand for helicopters and other defense-related equipment. Airbus is leading Boeing for the year in orders of new commercial aircraft, with 493 orders net of cancellations to Boeing’s 260 (paywall). Orders of Airbus’s smaller, fuel-efficient A320 and A330 commercial aircraft are also up.
What’s interesting: The A350—the Airbus passenger model meant to compete with Boeing’s problematic Dreamliner 787—will take flight for the first time this summer and be delivered to airlines in the second half of 2014. Setbacks in what the company calls a “challenging” launch program could still delay the A350′s delivery. But EADS may be moving slowly for good reason, hoping to avoid the type of problems that grounded the first Dreamliners for months.