Yesterday, the first long-haul commercial flight took place on an aircraft fueled entirely by environmentally friendly SAF fuel. The Boeing 787, powered by Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engines, took off from London and landed in New York. And today Rolls-Royce announced that it is changing its strategy, stopping relying on electric motors.
The company has not only decided to switch its focus to SAF fuel-powered engines – it will sell the Rolls-Royce Electric division, which makes electric engines for flying taxis and small planes. At the same time, the production volume of jet fuel engines will double. In particular, Rolls-Royce will invest the proceeds from the sale of said assets (and other assets) into its ultrafan engine.
In general, of course, it is not at all about yesterday’s flight. The company was hit hard during the COVID-19 pandemic, laying off thousands of people, and this year Rolls-Royce was led by a new leader who started simplifying the business. Of course, if the company had high hopes for electric motors, it would not be planning to sell the corresponding division, but it probably would not have been sold either, without the tragedy. In addition, Rolls-Royce will sell not only Rolls-Royce Electrical, but also a number of other non-core assets.