(Reuters) – Boeing Co reached a point where negotiation for Embraer’s commercial aerospace division “was no longer helpful,” chief executive Dave Calhoun told shareholders on Monday at the U.S. planemaker’s annual general meeting.
Boeing, which is working to bring its 737 MAX jet back into service after two fatal crashes, canceled the $4.2 billion deal for the Brazilian company’s regional jet division over the weekend, prompting Embraer to initiate arbitration.
“It is deeply disappointing, but we had reached a point where continued negotiation was no longer helpful,” Calhoun told the virtual meeting. “We worked diligently for two years to finalize the transaction, but ultimately we could not come to a resolution around critical unsatisfied conditions for the deal.”
The deal’s cancellation comes as the aviation industry slumps because of the coronavirus, which has dried up demand for passenger air travel.
Calhoun said Boeing expects it will take two to three years for travel to return to 2019 levels and an additional few years more for industry’s long-term trend growth to return.
Earlier during the meeting, Boeing said each of the company’s 12 board nominees received a majority of votes from shareholders. Two proxy advisers, Glass Lewis and Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS), had recommended that Boeing shareholders vote against key board members to show objections to the company’s handling of the 737 MAX crisis.
(Reporting By David Shepardson in Washington DC and Allison Lampert in Montreal, Editing by Franklin Paul and Andrea Ricci)