Two articles called my attention:
" Airbus faces delay costs but not cancellation"
New delays expected for the A380 superjumbo airliner are a blow to Airbus after a production crisis three months ago but are unlikely to cause customers to cancel orders....
....Analyst Scott Babka at Morgan Stanley said that the biggest danger for Airbus was knock-on effects elsewhere in its business.
"Real risk from here is that the A380 delays start to affect Airbus' competitiveness across the rest of its portfolio," said Babka in a research note Friday.
He explained that this could happen if "further delays on the superjumbo tie up resources and impede Airbus' ability to compete and introduce new products in other segments of the market". ...
....each A380 required 40,000 hours of re-work, which he said would result in an incremental cost of 1.6 million euros (2.1 million dollars) per aircraft.
Babka estimated that each of the first 100 planes delivered would also be discounted by an additional 5.0 million euros as compensation for the new delays. ....
....In London, the Financial Times reported that "the spectre of order cancellations is hanging over Airbus" and an unnamed analyst quoted in fellow British paper The Daily Telegraph made a similar suggestion. ....
"Maseu Wants Airbus A380 Purchase Cancelled"
The Malaysia Airlines System Employees Union (Maseu) has urged Penerbangan Malaysia Bhd (PMB), the holding company of Malaysia Airlines (MAS) to cancel its purchase of Airbus A380 aircraft whose delivery have again been delayed.
Conflicting reports are flying, but I think some cancellations are imminent, nonetheless as the delays can be used by some airlines whose growth plans have not materialized as a pretext to avoid getting an airplane they will have hard time filling up with passengers.
In my opinion the biggest challenge will be cashflow over the next 2-3 years to fund the development of the A350 while ironing out A380 production issues and paying BAE. This may force Airbus to slow down the development of the A350 which would allow Boeing to grab an even bigger share of the mid-size segment. The A320E may be another "victim" with a 1-2 yeards delay.