General Electric Aviation and Embraer announced significant changes to their executive rooms, as the two companies shuffled executives.

The current president and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of General Electric Aviation, David Joyce, has retired after 40 years at the Boston, Massachusetts, United States-based company.

Joyce will be replaced by John Slattery, the current president and chief executive officer of Embraer’s Commercial Aircraft arm. Slattery first joined the Brazilian manufacturer in March 2011. He eventually overtook the role of president and CEO of Embraer in July 2016.

John Slattery will replace David Joyce effective July 13, 2020. However, Slattery will fully assume the role only on September 1, to ensure a “smooth and thorough handover,” indicated the press release. Joyce will continue as a non-executive chairman at the company until December 31, 2020, after which he will transition into an advisory role in 2021.

Embraer’s new president and CEO will be Arjan Meijer, formerly a Chief Commercial Officer (CCO) at Embraer-Commercial.

Financial and demand struggles

While GE Aviation has retained its profitability, as it reported a $1 billion profit in Q1 2020, its profits dropped by 39% compared to the same period last year. Furthermore, GE expects an even worse Q2, as operators of its engines had 76% fewer departures compared to the usual weekly trend. Furthermore, aircraft deliveries are also slowing down, reducing the need for aircraft engines.

In a move to reduce expenses, on May 4, 2020, Joyce announced that GE Aviation will reduce its workforce by 25%, as both voluntary and involuntary layoffs will be involved.

“To protect our business, we have responded with difficult cost-cutting actions over the last two months. Unfortunately, more is required as we scale the business to the realities of our commercial market,” stated the retiring executive.

The Brazilian aircraft manufacturer, meanwhile, has been hit hard by the coronacrisis. Not only its revenues are down, but the proposed deal of Boeing acquiring Embraer’s Commercial Aviation subsidiary fell through. In its Q1 2020 results filing, Embraer indicated that Boeing has taken the former to arbitration, as Embraer previously did as well.

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The never happened marriage of Boeing and Embraer still has a twist in its story. Boeing is taking Embraer to arbitration over the collapsed partnership deal between the two manufacturers, much like Embraer did to the U.S. company in April 2020.