Former Boeing president and chief executive Dennis Muilenburg has walked away from the company with a US$62 million (almost £48 million) pay-out, while 2,800 people have been made redundant thanks to the 737 Max groundings.
Muilenburg, who was fired at the end of December following a disastrous year, was denied severance pay, his annual bonus and other incentives worth nearly US$15 million (£11.5 million).
However, an SEC filing from Boeing shows that in addition to the US$62 million in compensation and pension benefits he was due, Muilenburg holds stock options that were worth US$18.5 million on Friday.
His take-home package was announced on the same day Spirit AeroSystems, an aerospace manufacturer based in Kansas that supplies a significant number of parts for the 737 Max under contract, announced it would make around 2,800 employees redundant owing to Boeing’s suspension of production on the aircraft’s assembly line.
Those affected will receive compensation for a 60-day notice period, according to the firm.
In an effort to limit the impact of the lay-offs, Spirit will transfer some 737 Max employees to other programmes where possible and is looking to facilitate job fairs with other manufacturers to help those being let go to find new roles.
Spirit said the Max programme represents more than 50 per cent of its annual revenue and that Boeing had not given the company any indication of how long production will be suspended.
The 737 Max has been grounded since March 2019 following two crashes in which 346 people died.
Boeing has faced tough questions from world authorities in relation to the disasters, with the US Senate saying its investigation of the certification process for the Max brought up concerns of “a pattern of deliberate concealment” on Boeing’s part.
The comment now seems even more pertinent after internal messages between employees, which were earlier given to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the US government, were made public. One email seems to suggest Boeing lobbied against the FAA’s calls for a certain aspect of simulator training.
Meanwhile, new Boeing CEO David Calhoun will receive an annual basic pay package of US$1.4 million, along with an annual incentive of 180 per cent of his salary for on-target earnings and a US$7 million incentive for getting the Max back in the skies.