Envoy’s (formerly American Eagle Airlines) (subsidiary of American Airlines Group) (Dallas/Fort Worth) pilots, represented by the Airline Pilots Association (ALPA), will not be voting on the new proposed company contract any time soon. The Master Executive Council of the American Eagle Pilot’s Union, voted down the latest contract proposal by the company. The company’s proposal would have given the company pilot work rule and further pay concessions in return for new Embraer 175 regional jets to be flown by Envoy’s pilots.
Envoy’s management has made it clear that if the contract was not approved the company would be reduced and aircraft reassigned to other American Eagle carriers. Once reduced in size, Envoy would be liquidated.
ALPA did not want its Envoy members to be flying for rates lower than other airlines and will now ask management about a timetable for liquidation. ALPA will help Envoy pilots find jobs at other carriers.
American Eagle Airlines (2nd) (subsidiary of American Airlines Group) (Dallas/Fort Worth) and its pilots, represented by the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA), have reached an agreement in principle on a new contract. According to an ALPA letter sent to its members, the union gave up contractual concessions in return for a guarantee that it will operate 60 new Embraer 175 aircraft with options for 90 additional aircraft. The pilots will also have increased flow through opportunities to American Airlines (currently restricted at 30 per month). In exchange, the Eagle pay rates will be frozen until 2018. Starting on January 1, 2018 pilots will receive a 1 percent annual increase unless the pilot has declined the flow through to American.
In other news, with this announcement, the company is also expected to unveil a new company name very shortly as other carriers are now flying under the American Eagle brand.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. American Eagle currently operates 47 Bombardier CRJ700 (CL-600-2C10) aircraft for American (+ Embraer ERJ 140s and ERJ 145s which will be retired by 2017). Bombardier CRJ700 N535EA (msn 10313) climbs away from the runway at Los Angeles International Airport.
SkyWest, Inc. (St. George, Utah) today reported net income of $26.4 million, or $0.50 per diluted share, for the quarter ended September 30, 2013, compared to net income of $20.9 million, or $0.40 per diluted share, for the same period last year.
SkyWest also reported net income of $50.3 million, or $0.96 per diluted share, for the nine months ended September 30, 2013, compared to $37.2 million, or $0.72 per diluted share, for the same period last year.
SkyWest experienced improved financial results for the quarter ended September 30, 2013, compared to its financial results for the quarter ended September 30, 2012. SkyWest generated increased operating revenues (after giving effect to reduced fuel, certain engine overhaul and landing fee pass through amounts) primarily due to additional block hour production from increased aircraft utilization, larger fleet size and rate escalations in SkyWest contracts with its major airline partners. Following are selected highlights from SkyWest’s quarter ended September 30, 2013, compared to the quarter ended September 30, 2012:
Increased pretax income 34.8% to $44.4 million, compared to $32.9 million
Increased fully-diluted EPS 25.0% to $0.50, compared to $0.40
Increased block hour production 2.8% to 613,821 block hours, compared to 596,901 block hours
Increased operating revenues by approximately $32.9 million (net of fuel, certain engine overhaul and landing fee pass through revenues), primarily related to rate escalations under SkyWest’s agreements with its major partners and increased block hour production
Made cash payments of $22.9 million consisting of $11.5 million for the repurchase of 800,000 shares of treasury stock and $11.4 million for deposits on new aircraft
Increased total aircraft fleet to 756 aircraft as of September 30, 2013, compared to 739 aircraft as of September 30, 2012
Commenting on the results, Jerry C. Atkin, SkyWest’s Chairman and CEO, said “We are pleased with the improved financial performance for the current quarter. However, in spite of current challenges we remain committed to further improvement in meeting our current and long-term operational and financial objectives.”
Financial and Operating Results
Operating revenues totaled $850.7 million for the quarter ended September 30, 2013, compared to $865.3 million for the same period last year or a decrease of $14.6 million. The decrease was due primarily to the reduction of approximately $47.5 million in fuel, certain engine overhaul amounts and landing fees which were directly reimbursed by SkyWest’s major partners and recorded as operating revenues. However, this reduction was mostly offset by recording approximately $32.9 million in additional operating revenues, primarily resulting from rate escalations under SkyWest’s agreements with its major partners and a 2.8% increase in total block hours for the quarter ended September 30, 2013, compared to the quarter ended September 30, 2012.
Total airline expenses (consisting of total operating and interest expenses) decreased $18.2 million, or 2.2%, during the quarter ended September 30, 2013, compared to the same period in 2012. However, after excluding pass-through costs for fuel, certain engine overhaul expenses and landing fees, total airline expenses increased $29.3 million.
Under certain of its agreements with its major partners, SkyWest recognizes revenue at fixed hourly rates for mature engine maintenance on regional jet engines and SkyWest recognizes engine maintenance expense on its CRJ200 regional jet engines on an as-incurred basis as maintenance expense. During the quarter ended September 30, 2013, CRJ200 engine expense under these agreements decreased $4.0 million to $9.1 million, compared to $13.1 million for the quarter ended September 30, 2012, primarily as a result of decreased engine overhaul expense due to the timing of scheduled engine maintenance events. SkyWest was reimbursed approximately $12.8 million and $10.4 million for engine overhaul expense, under its agreements with its major partners, during the quarters ended September 30, 2013 and 2012, respectively.
At September 30, 2013, SkyWest had $727.8 million in cash and marketable securities, compared to $709.4 million as of December 31, 2012. The increase in cash and marketable securities of $18.4 million was primarily the result of increased profitability. Cash and marketable securities increased $62.2 million during the quarter ended September 30, 2013 compared to a balance of $665.6 as of June 30, 2013. SkyWest’s long-term debt was $1.35 billion as of September 30, 2013, compared to $1.47 billion as of December 31, 2012. The decrease in long-term debt for the nine-months ended September 30, 2013 was due primarily to SkyWest’s payment of normal recurring debt obligations. SkyWest has significant long-term lease obligations that are recorded as operating leases and are not reflected as liabilities on SkyWest’s consolidated balance sheets. At a 4.7% discount rate, the present value of these lease obligations was approximately $1.6 billion as of September 30, 2013.
Recent Business Developments
On August 2, 2012, SkyWest announced the award of 34 additional dual-class aircraft and the removal of 66 CRJ200 aircraft under its Delta Connection Agreements with Delta Airlines, Inc. As of May 2013, all 34 of these additional dual-class aircraft had been delivered. As of September 30, 2013 SkyWest had removed 30 (22 placed in contract with another partner; other 8 removed from fleet) of the 66 CRJ200 aircraft from service and currently anticipates removing another 18 CRJ200 aircraft between October 2013 and December 2013. SkyWest believes the remaining 18 CRJ200 aircraft will be removed at various times through 2014 and early 2015. Additionally, 41 of the 66 aircraft have been financed by Delta and will be returned to Delta with no further obligation by SkyWest.
On May 21, 2013, SkyWest announced it had entered into a Capacity Purchase Agreement (CPA) with United Airlines, Inc. to operate 40 new Embraer ERJ 175 dual-class regional jet aircraft. The CPA is for 12 years and the new aircraft will be operated by SkyWest’s wholly-owned subsidiary, SkyWest Airlines, Inc. (United Express). Deliveries for these aircraft are scheduled to begin in March 2014 and continue through August 2015.
Additionally, on May 21, 2013 SkyWest announced it reached an agreement with Embraer S.A. for the purchase of 100 new ERJ 175 dual-class regional jet aircraft, 40 of which are considered firm orders and the remaining 60 aircraft remain conditional upon SkyWest entering into capacity purchase agreements with other major airlines. SkyWest intends to place the 40 new aircraft into service under the terms of the United CPA discussed above.
On June 17, 2013, SkyWest and Embraer jointly announced an aircraft purchase agreement covering 100 E175-E2 dual-class regional jet aircraft and an option to purchase an additional 100 of the same aircraft. Deliveries for these E2 aircraft are tentatively planned to start in 2020.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. SkyWest Airlines’ Bombardier CRJ700 (CL-600-2C10) N752SK (msn 10209) climbs away from the runway at Los Angeles.
Alaska Airlines (Seattle/Tacoma) begins daily service between Boise, Idaho, and San Diego today, as the carrier celebrates 30 years of service to Boise Airport.
Summary of new service:
All times based on local time zones.
The flights will be operated by Alaska Airlines regional partners SkyWest Airlines (St. George) and Horizon Air (Seattle/Tacoma).
In other news, Alaska Airlines is also inaugurating daily service between Seattle/Tacoma and Colorado Springs, Colorado, starting today, and between Seattle/Tacoma and Omaha, Nebraska, starting on November 7.
Summary of new service:
Times based on local time zones.
Flights will be operated by SkyWest Airlines using 70-seat Bombardier CRJ700 regional jets.
Finally, Alaska Airlines is growing again in Portland, Oregon, with new nonstop flights between the Rose City and Tucson, Arizona, today, and between Portland and Reno/Tahoe, Nevada, starting on November 8.
Summary of new service:
** Nov. 1 and Nov. 2 flight time differs due to daylight saving time adjustment.
All times based on local times zones.
Alaska Airlines’ Portland-Tucson flights will be operated by SkyWest Airlines using 70-seat CRJ700 regional jets (above). Portland-Reno/Tahoe flights will be flown for Alaska by Horizon Air using 76-seat Bombardier DHC-8-402s (Q400s).
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Alaska SkyWest’s (SkyWest Airlines) Bombardier CRJ700 (CL-600-2C10) N217AG (msn 10031) climbs away from the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport hub.
United Airlines (Chicago) will add flights to popular U.S. ski destinations for the upcoming winter and spring ski season, with three new routes and increased service on several existing routes.
On December 12, 2013, United will launch nonstop service from its San Francisco hub to Sun Valley, Idaho, with daily flights offered through March 30, 2014.
United will also begin nonstop service from its Chicago O’Hare hub to Gunnison/Crested Butte and Steamboat Springs/Hayden, Colorado. The Gunnison/Crested Butte flights will begin on December 21, 2013, and the Steamboat Springs/Hayden flights will begin on February 15, 2014. The Gunnison/Crested Butte and Steamboat Springs/Hayden flights will operate through March 29, 2014.
Additional Service on Existing Markets
United will also add flights to existing ski market routes from several of its hubs:
Denver to Kalispell/Whitefish, Montana.
Houston to Aspen, Colorado.
Houston, Los Angeles and Newark to Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
Los Angeles to Steamboat Springs/Hayden, Colorado.
Newark to Bozeman, Montana.
United Express carrier SkyWest Airlines (United Express) (St. George, UT) will operate the new routes, using Bombardier CRJ700 regional jet aircraft with United First, United Economy Plus and United Economy seating.
SkyWest’s CRJ700 aircraft are among the first being outfitted with United’s new signature seat design that is focused on customer comfort and environmental responsibility.
The multi-tonal leather seats on the CRJ700 aircraft will have more ergonomic and supportive cushioning and additional seat-back storage space in United Economy Plus and United Economy. New technology makes the seats more environmentally friendly by reducing seat weight and volume, contributing to less fuel burn. United will also outfit other aircraft types with the multi-tonal leather interiors and similar cushioning and seat-back storage.
Winter Ski Destinations from All U.S. Hubs
From the Denver hub alone, United offers nonstop flights to 13 ski resorts for the winter ski season. Additionally, the new flights further expand United’s broad range of winter-season service from all of its U.S. hubs to ski destinations across North America, including:
Aspen: from Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles and San Francisco
Bozeman: from Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles, New York/Newark and San Francisco
Burlington, Vt.: from Chicago, Cleveland, New York/Newark and Washington
Durango, Colo.: from Denver
Eagle/Vail, Colo.: from Denver, Houston and New York/Newark
Gunnison/Crested Butte: from Chicago, Denver and Houston
Hayden/Steamboat Springs: from Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, and New York/Newark
Jackson Hole: from Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, New York/Newark and San Francisco
Kalispell/Whitefish: from Denver
Kelowna, British Columbia: from Los Angeles
Mammoth Lakes, Calif.: from Orange County and San Francisco
Montrose/Telluride, Colo.: from Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, and New York/Newark
Reno/Tahoe, Nev.: from Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, and San Francisco
Salt Lake City: from Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, and San Francisco
Santa Fe/Taos, N.M.: from Denver
Sun Valley: from San Francisco
Vancouver, British Columbia: from Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, and San Francisco
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. SkyWest Airlines’ Bombardier CRJ700 (CL-600-2C10) N706SK (msn 10149) climbs away from the runway at Los Angeles International Airport.
Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) is planning to launch weekly Delta Connection service between Orlando and Norfolk, Virginia. The new route will be operated on Saturdays with Bombardier CRJ700 aircraft per Airline Route.
The operator is unspecified.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. SkyWest Airlines‘ Bombardier CRJ700 (CL-600-2C10) N604SK (msn 10249) lands at Long Beach, California.
American Eagle Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) will start daily nonstop New York (LaGuardia)-Little Rock, Arkansas service on November 26. The new route will be operated with Bombardier CRJ700 regional jets per Airline Route.
Update: According to Airline Route this route has now been pulled from the American schedules on Amadeus.
American Eagle is still considering a name change due to several airlines now operating under the American Eagle brand.
Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/AirlinersGallery.com. Bombardier CRJ700 (CL-600-2C10) N505AE (msn 10053) taxies at Toronto (Pearson).
Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) is planning to operate weekly Raleigh/Durham-Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood flights this winter starting on December 21 per Airline Route. The route will be flown by Delta Connection Bombardier CRJ700s. The operator is not specified (probably ExpressJet Airlines).
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Bombardier CRJ700 (CL-600-2C10) N603SK (msn 10248) arrives at Los Angeles.
Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) will add new nonstop seasonal service to Aspen/Snowmass, Colorado with daily flights from Atlanta and Saturday-only flights from Minneapolis-St. Paul, effective on December 21, 2013.
The new service will be operated by Delta Connection carrier, SkyWest Airlines (Delta Connection) (St. George, Utah), using a two-class, 65-seat Bombardier CRJ700 aircraft, featuring nine First Class seats and eight Economy Comfort seats.
The schedule for Delta’s new nonstop service connecting Aspen to Atlanta and Minneapolis is as follows:
Dec. 21, 2013
March 30, 2014
Dec. 21, 2013
March 30, 2014
Dec. 21, 2013
March 29, 2014
Dec. 21, 2013
March 29, 2014
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Bombardier CRJ700 (CL-600-2C10) N609SK (msn 10020) Climbs away from the runway at Los Angeles International Airport.
Alaska Airlines (Seattle/Tacoma) will begin new seasonal service between Seattle/Tacoma and Steamboat Springs/Hayden, Colorado, this winter. The twice-weekly flights will operate from December 18, 2013, through March 29, 2014.