GE Aerospace sees $10 bln in operating profit in 2028, sets dividend target


By Rajesh Kumar Singh and Abhijith Ganapavaram

NEW YORK, March 7 (Reuters) - General Electric Co's GE.N aerospace business on Thursday forecast its operating profit to rise to about $10 billion in 2028 and said it was targeting an initial dividend payout at 30% of net income.

Ahead of its investor day, GE Aerospace reaffirmed its 2024 targets, and authorized up to $15 billion in share repurchases as part of its plans to return 70% to 75% cash to shareholders.

GE Aerospace, which makes engines for Boeing BA.N and Airbus AIR.PA jets, has seen a surge in demand for aftermarket services as a strong rebound in travel and a shortage of new jets prompt airlines to keep their planes in the air for longer.

More than 70% of the $24 billion annual revenue that the unit's commercial engines business generates comes from services.

Once a diversified industrial conglomerate, GE said in 2021 it would break up into three companies focused on aviation, healthcare and energy. GE separated its healthcare business last year and expects to complete separation of the energy and aviation businesses next month.

GE Aerospace has been a cash cow for the Boston-based company, with some analysts estimating its market value to be more than $100 billion after the spin off.

On Thursday, the unit reaffirmed its 2024 forecast of $6.0 billion to $6.5 billion in adjusted operating profit, more than $5 billion in free cash flow and a low-double digit or higher growth rate in adjusted revenue.

In 2025, operating profit is expected to rise to $7.1 billion to $7.5 billion, while adjusted revenue is set to grow in low-double digits.

GE Aerospace said it will pursue M&A deals with a "disciplined" approach and prioritize investments in research and development.

GE shares were up marginally before the bell on Thursday.

(Reporting by Rajesh Kumar Singh in New York and Abhijith Ganapavaram in Bengaluru; Editing by Shilpi Majumdar and David Evans)

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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