Assignment Summary - Building on 2017's Success with a Bigger 2018 Push

In 2017, Edelman and the Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ)* team executed a successful, comprehensive communications campaign that helped the program restore customer and supplier trust in its direction. While the 2017 program was successful in quelling doubts about Mitsubishi Heavy Industry's (MHI) ability to deliver a mature product to the market on schedule, MHI and Edelman recognized a need in 2018 to demonstrate not just competence, but real confidence in the MRJ's progress and the value it offers to airlines.

The challenge presented an exciting opportunity for the MRJ team but was posed amid a complex industry backdrop. The regional aircraft market is currently a duopoly, ruled by Embraer and Bombardier. In early-2018, the duopoly became even more entrenched as both Bombardier and Embraer were involved in market-shaping M&A activity. Bombardier's CSeries program was acquired by Airbus, and Embraer's civil aviation division (including its widely-used E-Jet and E2 regional platforms) was acquired by Boeing. Beyond those two options is a field of upstart programs seeking to capture a segment of the market, including heavily state-subsidized programs from Russia (Sukhoi) and China (COMAC), along with the MRJ.