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645 Words Jan 16th, 2013 3 Pages
Boeing: Selling a Dream(liner)
Think about the biggest purchase that you’ve ever made. Was it a car? A computer? A piece of furniture or an appliance? Think about the time you put in to researching that decision, all the factors that you considered in making your choice, and how much the purchase ultimately cost.
Now imagine that you are part of a buying team for a major airline considering the purchase of multiple commercial jets, each costing over $100 million. A slightly different situation? Such are the customers that Boeing deals with every day. Selling commercial and military aircraft involves some of the most complicated transactions in the world. At those prices, a single sale can add up to billions of dollars. And
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For starters, its only major rival, France-based
Airbus, began to overtake Boeing in product innovation during the 1990s. In the wake of September 11, 2001, Boeing lost its industry lead in commercial airplane sales to Airbus. To make matters worse, Boeing soon found itself in the midst of a series of ethical scandals. In the early 2000s, the company faced two separate cases of cheating to win defense contracts with the U.S.
Air Force. The scandals resulted in a Department of Justice investigation, the ousting of Boeing’s CEO, prison terms for two other executives, and the loss of billions of dollars in business. To make matters even worse, in the face of a scandalous extramarital affair, the next CEO stepped down as well.
With its reputation sullied and its financial situation suffering,
Boeing got back to the business of serving its corporate clients. In
April 2004, the giant airplane maker announced the program launch of its 787 Dreamliner, Boeing’s first all-new aircraft since the 777, launched a decade earlier. The Dreamliner is not the world’s biggest passenger jet—Airbus’s A380 and even Boeing’s own 747 are bigger. But with the 787, Boeing saw more potential in the midsized wide-body market. From the beginning, it set out to create a jet with groundbreaking innovations that would translate into true benefits for its customers, the type of benefits

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