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Boeing to Acquire Longtime Supplier Spirit AeroSystems for $4.7 Billion Amid Ongoing Challenges

Boeing will acquire its longtime supplier Spirit AeroSystems for $4.7 billion, valuing the deal at around $8.3 billion, including Spirit’s last reported net debt. This acquisition occurs as Boeing grapples with safety scandals and potential criminal charges from the Department of Justice related to the deadly 737 MAX crashes.

Boeing President and CEO Dave Calhoun stated that the deal benefits the flying public, airline customers, employees, shareholders, and the country. By reintegrating Spirit, Boeing aims to fully align its commercial production systems, including safety and quality management, to prioritize safety and quality.

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This decision follows a January incident where a faulty door panel, manufactured by Spirit, blew off a Boeing 737 MAX mid-air during an Alaska Airlines flight, injuring several passengers. This incident, along with whistleblower concerns about Boeing’s safety practices, has led to increased scrutiny from regulators, Congress, and airlines.

Amid these challenges, the Department of Justice plans to offer Boeing a deal to plead guilty to criminal charges over the two deadly 737 MAX crashes in 2018 and 2019, which killed 346 people. The proposed deal includes Boeing pleading guilty to conspiracy charges, paying a fine of about $200 million, and remaining on probation for three years, avoiding a highly public trial.

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Calhoun has apologized to the families of the crash victims and stated that Boeing is “totally committed” to future aircraft safety. He is also set to resign from his role at the end of the year.

The acquisition of Spirit AeroSystems aims to help Boeing regain control over its supply chain and improve the quality and safety of its aircraft. However, the company continues to face significant challenges as it navigates the aftermath of the 737 MAX crashes and ongoing scrutiny from regulators and the public.

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