FedEx Cancels Airbus Jet Orders Over Delays, Opts for Boeing

FedEx Corp. (FDX) said Tuesday it has canceled its order for 10 Airbus A380 jets, the new jumbo double-decker plane that has been dogged by numerous delays.

The company's FedEx Express unit has ordered 15 Boeing Co. 777 freighters and taken options on an additional 15, FedEx said in a news release. The company cited Airbus' production delays as the reason for the decision.

Airbus regrets the decision by FedEx, company spokeswoman Barbara Kracht said, "but we understand their need to urgently address their capacity growth."

Airbus recently doubled the production delay for the A380 jet to two years. To streamline development and manufacturing, Airbus said Monday it will slash the number of suppliers it uses from 3,000 to 500.

FedEx did not immediately return a call for comment.

Boeing said delivery of its aircraft to FedEx Express will begin in 2009.

"We're looking forward to working with FedEx on this new chapter in our relationship," said Ray Conner, vice president of sales for the Americas for Boeing Commercial Airplanes.