American aircraft manufacturer Boeing has decided to downsize by selling off hundreds of office items and exercise equipment at online auction as it prepares to cut its Puget Sound regional office footprint. The sell-off comes after employees based at the commercial airplanes headquarters campus in Renton were told to clear out their belongings last month.
Clearing out the offices where 1,000 people worked is a clear sign that the Chicago-headquartered company is preparing to sell the property. When given the news, a couple of Boeing employees expressed their opinions on what was happening with the Seattle Times newspaper.
“It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know where this is going,” said one of the employees. “We’ve cleared out. It’s a recognition that the future will bring a combination of virtual work and hoteling.”
The second Boeing employee said that while the property was not yet on the market, it was pretty obvious to everyone that the planemaker seems to be “getting the building in shape to sell.”
Boeing is cutting costs
The selling of the property and all of the items within it comes as Boeing grapples with close to $20 billion worth of debt as new aircraft sales plummet due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the effect it has had on air travel. While some of the highest-priced items are being sold on Boeing’s own surplus goods website, other stuff, including restaurant equipment, is being sold online by Tacoma, Washington-based Cyberauctions.
When asked why Boeing was auctioning things off by the Puget Sound Business Journal, Boeing Commercial Airplanes spokeswoman Jessica Kowal said:
“In the normal course of business, Boeing routinely offers surplus items for auction; current auctions include excess equipment as we reduce our infrastructure and implement flexible work opportunities to adapt to the market.”
When asked if Boeing was selling its office building in Renton, Kowal declined to comment.
Sadly for aviation enthusiasts looking to grab a bit of Boeing for their home or office, Cyberauctions says that shipping is not available. This means that if you want to bid on something, you will have to pick up the stuff yourself or arrange to have someone do it for you. Cyberauctions also say that auction staff will not help you move or load your purchases.
The online sale finishes today at 10:00 PST, and you have March 24th, 25th, 26th, 29th, & 30th, 8:30 am-4:30 pm (five days only) to remove your purchases from 535 Garden Ave, North Renton, WA 98507.
Boeing has also put 310 acres of vacant land up for sale near its fabrication facility in Frederickson, Pierce County, Washington.
Boeing has had a tough year
First, there were the problems with the grounding 737 MAX and then issues with the Boeing 787, not to mention declining sales due to the global medical emergency. Boeing has had a very tough year and is doing what all corporations do when their back is against the wall, and that is to cut costs.
It’s a real shame that you can’t have any of the items shipped, and after just having a look at some of the current prices, it would appear as if there are some bargains to be had.
If you managed to win any of the Boeing goods that are up for sale, we would love to hear about what you bought and what you plan to do with it in the comments.