Bombardier has announced its financial results for the third quarter of 2020. The company also provided an update on its progress towards achieving its near-term priorities. “While the ongoing pandemic continues to present unprecedented challenges, we remain focused on advancing our key priorities, which include taking great care of our people and customers; ensuring sufficient liquidity to weather the storm; and continuing to move forward with our strategic repositioning of Bombardier as a leaner, focused business aviation company,” says Éric Martel, president and CEO. “In the third quarter, we made solid progress on each of these priorities. We secured additional liquidity with a new billion dollar senior secured credit facility, we kept our divestitures moving forward as planned and with deliveries ramping up across the businesses we are still targeting break-even free-cash-flow for the second half of the year, assuming operations remain uninterrupted by the pandemic.”
Third quarter revenues of $3.5 billion reflect the gradual recovery of operations at Bombardier's aviation and transportation divisions from the COVID-19 related disruptions in the first half of 2020. Business aircraft revenues in the quarter were up 10 per cent year-over-year, driven by a record eight Global 7500 aircraft deliveries, which more than offset lower service revenues as international border restrictions, reduced business activity and travel continue to pressure business jet utilisation.
The company expects a seasonally strong fourth quarter, including approximately a dozen Global 7500 deliveries before year end. Transportation's free cash flow was near break-even for the quarter.
Bombardier began the fourth quarter with strong pro-forma liquidity of approximately $3.0 billion. This includes $1.9 billion of cash on hand, access to the undrawn amounts of approximately $600 million on transportation's revolving credit facility as of September 30, 2020, $250 million under the new senior secured term loan facility as at September 30, 2020, and $275 million of proceeds from the recent sale of its aerostructures business. The company expects to further strengthen liquidity with positive cash generation in the fourth quarter, driven by the release of working capital both at aviation and transportation.
With the definitive sale and purchase agreement signed in September, and the recent Alstom shareholder approval, Bombardier believes it is on a solid path to close the Bombardier transportation sale in the first quarter of 2021. As a result, the transportation business results have been classified as discontinued operations as of September 30, 2020. At closing, the company expects net cash proceeds of approximately $4 billion, which will be directed to debt pay down.
“We are very excited about our future as a focused business jet company, about our opportunities to grow the services business and to leverage our industry-leading product portfolio,” Martel continues. “We look forward to sharing the details of our plans in the near future, as we finalise our debt management strategy and cost-cutting initiatives to ensure our profitability in the current market and strong growth once the pandemic subsides.”