Tag Archives: Republic Airways Holdings Inc.

Republic Airways Holdings to go to federal arbitration with its pilots on September 16

Republic Airways Holdings (Indianapolis) has issued this statement regarding its on-going dispute with its pilots for a new contract under federal mediation:

Republic Airways Holdings logo

Republic Airways Holdings Inc. received notification from the National Mediation Board (NMB) requesting the Company meet with the NMB on September 16, 2015, in Washington, D.C. As our case remains under the control of the NMB, the Company intends to fully comply with the request of the mediator.

Although the International Brotherhood of Teamsters has deferred a vote by our Pilots, our proposed contract remains on the table, and we continue to believe the appropriate next step is for the Union to abide by its constitution and let our Pilots vote on their own future. A week ago, we offered to meet with the elected leadership of the Union to discuss their language concerns in the proposed contract. To our dismay, there has been no response from the Union leadership to this invitation as a way to collaboratively bring this process to a close.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Operated by Republic Airlines (2nd), Embraer ERJ 170-100SU N806MD (msn 17000019) completes the final approach to the runway at Washington (Reagan National).

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Republic Airways Holdings presents its “Last, Best and Final Offer” to its pilots

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Republic Airways Holdings Inc. (Indianapolis) has presented its “Last, Best and Final Offer” to the International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 357 representing its almost 2,100 pilots.

The Company posted the full text of the proposed three-year agreement, along with supporting material, to a dedicated website, www.myrjetcontract.com.

“Our Pilots deserve an industry-leading contract and this proposal meets that standard,” said Matt Koscal, Republic vice president for Human Resources. “It provides our Pilots improved job protection, compensation and quality of life for them and their families. It starts us on the path back to our tradition of operational excellence and a competitive position in the marketplace. We’re asking the Union to put this contract to a vote and asking our Pilots to read it. It’s time to move forward.”

Republic Airways Holdings orders five additional Embraer E175 regional jets

Embraer and Republic Airways Holdings Inc. (Republic Airlines 2nd) (Indianapolis), operator of the largest E-Jet fleet in the world, signed an order for five new E175 jets. The contract, with an estimated value of $222 million, based on Embraer’s list price, will be included in the 2015 first-quarter backlog. The aircraft, configured in dual class with 76 seats, are expected to be delivered in mid- 2016.

This order of five E-Jets is in addition to the previous two orders for E175s placed by Republic in January 2013, for 47 firm aircraft, and in September 2014, for 50 firm aircraft. Apart from this new order, Republic maintains 32 options for the E175s.

Copyright Photo: Rob Finlayson/AirlinersGallery.com. Republic Airlines (2nd) Embraer ERJ 170-200LR (marketed now as the E175) N401YX (msn 17000363) lands at Miami International Airport (MIA).

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Republic Airways Holdings reports net income of $64.3 million for 2014

Republic Airways Holdings Inc. (Republic Airlines and Shuttle America) (Indianapolis) has reported its financial results for the fourth quarter and full year ended December 31, 2014. The company reported net income of $64.3 million for 2014, a significant increase from its  net income of $26.7 million in 2013.

As planned, Chautauqua Airlines ended operations on December 31, 2014 and was rolled into Shuttle America as previously reported.

The company issued this report:

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Republic’s pre-tax income excluding special items, for the fourth quarter of 2014 was $32.1 million, an 8.4 percent increase over the fourth quarter or 2013. Republic’s adjusted income from continuing operations for the fourth quarter of 2014 was $19.8 million, or $0.39 per diluted share, and its adjusted pre-tax margin was 9.3 percent.

For the full year of 2014, Republic’s pre-tax income, excluding special items, was $120.2 million, a $17.7 million increase over 2013. Republic’s adjusted income from continuing operations for 2014 was $73.4 million, or $1.40 per diluted share, with an adjusted pre-tax margin of 8.7 percent.

On a GAAP basis, including special items, Republic’s fourth quarter 2014 pre-tax loss was $1.4 million, pre-tax margin was -0.4 percent and income from continuing operations was $11.7 million, or $0.23 per diluted share. On a GAAP basis, including special items, Republic’s 2014 pre-tax income was $85.2 million, pre-tax margin was 6.2 percent and income from continuing operations was $64.3 million, or $1.24 per diluted share.

On January 1, 2015, Republic completed its consolidation of all Chautauqua Airlines operations onto the Shuttle America operating certificate. All operating aircraft and related employees are now transferred to Shuttle America’s operation. Republic hopes to sell the remaining Chautauqua Airlines entity and related assets during the first half of 2015.

During the fourth quarter of 2014, Republic extended the service terms of aircraft under its fixed-fee capacity purchase agreements with US Airways, Inc. and Delta Air Lines, Inc. Republic also agreed to operate an additional nine E170 aircraft for Delta Air Lines, Inc.

“We took some significant steps in 2014 in our effort to simplify and streamline our business,” said Republic Airways Holdings Chairman, President and CEO Bryan Bedford. “While this simplification strategy results in near-term transition expenses, such as the fleet impairment charge we took this quarter, the actions that we’ve taken in 2014 and that we intend to take in 2015 are key to the future success of our airline.”

The impairment and other charges in 2014 were due to impairment and other charges on owned E140 aircraft which were abandoned of $19.9 million; owned E190 aircraft which are in the process of being sold of $14.4 million; owned Q400 aircraft which are scheduled to come out of service in the third quarter of 2016 of $13.3 million, and a loss on sale of E190 aircraft of $5.8 million. The 2013 impairment charges of $21.2 million related to owned E190 aircraft and the write-off of maintenance deposits on leased E190 aircraft.

Fleet Highlights

During 2014, our operational fleet decreased from 258 to 244. The company took delivery of 22 E175 aircraft, permanently parked 15 E140 aircraft, temporarily parked 13 E145 aircraft, sold two E190 aircraft and leased three E145 aircraft and three E190 aircraft.

During 2014, we took delivery of 22 E175 aircraft and removed 28 small regional jets.

In December 2014, we completed the sale of two E190 aircraft and executed an agreement to sell three other E190 aircraft. The sale of these five aircraft will leave us with two owned E190 aircraft and three leased E190 aircraft that are expected to be removed from fixed-fee charter service in August of 2015. We expect to return the three leased aircraft to the lessor in 2015 and the remaining two aircraft are under a firm sales agreement.

Balance Sheet and Liquidity

The Company’s total cash balance decreased $55.1 million to $245.6 million as of Dec. 31, 2014, compared to Dec. 31, 2013. Restricted cash decreased $2.3 million, to $21.7 million, from Dec. 31, 2013, due to the escrow requirements under our fixed-fee charter agreements. The Company’s unrestricted cash balance decreased $52.8 million, to $223.9 million, from Dec. 31, 2013, due primarily to equity investments in new aircraft and the redemption of the $22.3 million and $26.5 million convertible notes on April 7, 2014, and Oct. 28, 2014, respectively. The Company also purchased 212,881 shares of its common stock on the open market, during the third quarter of 2014 for total consideration of $2.1 million. A consolidated balance sheet and summary cash flow statement have been included in the tables section of this release.

The Company’s debt increased to $2.34 billion as of Dec. 31, 2014, compared to $2.17 billion at Dec. 31, 2013, primarily related to the financing of 22, new E175 aircraft purchased for our American Airlines fixed-fee agreement. As of Dec. 31, 2014, approximately 98 percent of our debt is at a fixed interest rate. The Company has significant long-term lease obligations for aircraft that are classified as operating leases and are not reflected as liabilities on the Company’s consolidated balance sheet. At a 6 percent discount factor, the present value of these lease obligations was approximately $0.48 billion and $0.59 billion as of Dec. 31, 2014, and Dec. 31, 2013, respectively.

Corporate Information

Republic Airways Holdings Inc., based in Indianapolis, Indiana, is an airline holding company that owns Republic Airlines, Shuttle America and Chautauqua Airlines, collectively “the airlines.” As of Dec. 31, 2014, the airlines operated a combined fleet of about 245 aircraft and offered scheduled passenger service on more than 1,300 flights daily to approximately 100 cities in the U.S., Canada and the Caribbean through fixed-fee flights operated under our major airline partner brands, including American Eagle, Delta Connection, United Express, and US Airways Express. The Company currently employs about 6,500 aviation professionals.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. During 2014 Republic took delivery of 22 Embraer E175 aircraft. Republic Airlines’ Embraer ERJ 170-200LR (ERJ 175) N415YX (msn 17000378) arrives in Washington (Reagan National).

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Shuttle America to operate nine additional Embraer ERJ 170s for Delta Air Lines

Republic Airways Holdings Inc. (Indianapolis) has announced it has reached an amendment to its Capacity Purchase Agreement (“CPA”) with Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) to operate nine additional 69-seat Embraer ERJ 170 (E170) aircraft. The aircraft are scheduled to be placed into service between the 3rd quarter of 2015 and the 2nd quarter of 2016 and will operate for a term of six years per aircraft. In addition, the Company and Delta have agreed to extend the term of the agreement for the existing 14 ERJ 170 aircraft by four years, or through October 2021, and the existing 16 ERJ 175 aircraft by approximately five years, or through February 2024. Both types are operated for Delta by subsidiary Shuttle America.

The nine additional ERJ 170 aircraft will either be sourced internally by the Company or with used aircraft available in the open market.

Republic Airways Holdings Inc., based in Indianapolis, Indiana, is an airline holding company that owns Chautauqua Airlines, Republic Airlines and Shuttle America.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Embraer ERJ 170-100SU N870RW (msn 17000138) arrives in Washington (Reagan National).

Delta Connection-Shuttle America aircraft slide show:

Republic Airways Holdings reports third net income of $18.5 million, will sublease 24 Bombardier Q400s to Flybe

Republic Airways Holdings Inc. (Indianapolis) reported its financial results for the third quarter of 2014:

Republic’s pre-tax income from continuing operations for the third quarter of 2014 was $30.5 million compared to $5.4 million for the prior year’s third quarter. In the third quarter of 2013, the Company incurred an impairment charge of $21.2 million. Absent this impairment, Republic’s pre-tax income from continuing operations increased $3.9 million, or 14.7%.

Republic’s net income for the third quarter of 2014 was $18.5 million, or $0.35 per diluted share.

Republic’s pre-tax income from continuing operations for the nine months ending Sept. 30, 2014, was $86.6 million compared to $51.7 million for the same period of 2013. Absent impairment charges in both years and a fair value gain recorded in 2014, Republic’s pre-tax income from continuing operations increased from $72.9 million to $88.1 million, or 20.9%. Republic’s net income for the nine months ending Sept. 30, 2014, was $52.6 million, or $1.01 per diluted share.

During the quarter, the Company announced it would add 50 new E175 aircraft to its Capacity Purchase Agreement with United. The aircraft, which each have a term of 12 years, are expected to be delivered between mid-2015 and mid-2017. The Company and United also agreed to an early wind-down schedule for the Company’s 31 Q400 aircraft currently in operation between early 2015 and late 2016.

As previously report, Republic has entered into a sublease with Flybe Limited, a UK airline, for 24 Q400 aircraft, with deliveries to Flybe coordinated with the removal of the aircraft from United service. The remaining Q400 aircraft will be sold, leased or returned to the lessor after removing them from United service.

Operating Revenue Highlights

Operating revenues increased $11.1 million, or 3.3%, as compared to the third quarter of 2013 to $349.7 million in the third quarter of 2014. Fixed-fee service revenue increased $23.4 million, or 7.3%, to $343.7 million due to increased E175 flying with American Airlines offset by the removal of 15 E140 and 12 E145 aircraft from service. Passenger service revenue decreased $12.6 million because of the removal of E190 aircraft operating under pro-rate agreement with Frontier Airlines.

Operating Expense Highlights

The increase in wages and benefits expenses of $6.7 million, or 7.7%, was primarily due to an increase in E175 operations, an increase in the cost of benefits we provide to our employees and new pilot flight and duty rest regulations.

Fuel expense for the third quarter of 2014 decreased $6.2 million, or 54.9%, as compared to the third quarter of 2013 to $5.1 million primarily due to a 56.9% decrease in gallons consumed related to the elimination of pro-rated flying for Frontier. Fuel expense is primarily attributable to our fixed-fee charter operations and is a pass-through to our customers.

Depreciation and amortization expense for the third quarter of 2014 increased $6.7 million, or 18.1%, as compared to the third quarter of 2013 due primarily to the increase in the E175 fleet.

The other impairment charge of $21.2 million during the third quarter of 2013 was due to an impairment charge on owned E190 aircraft and the write-off of maintenance deposits on leased E190 aircraft.

Fleet Highlights

As of September 30, 2014, Republic operated a fleet of 240 aircraft. Through September, the Company has removed 27 ERJ aircraft from CPA service, and has taken delivery of 17 Embraer E175 aircraft and expects to take delivery of seven additional E175 aircraft during the remainder of 2014. As of September 30, 2014, within its fixed-fee and charter agreements, the Company operated 42 aircraft with 44-50 seats and 198 aircraft with 69-99 seats.

Balance Sheet and Liquidity

The Company’s total cash balance decreased $17.2 million to $283.5 million as of Sept. 30, 2014, compared to Dec. 31, 2013. Restricted cash increased $1.8 million, to $25.8 million, from Dec. 31, 2013, due to the escrow requirements under fixed-fee charter agreements. The Company’s unrestricted cash balance decreased $19.0 million, to $257.7 million, from Dec. 31, 2013, due mainly to equity investments into new aircraft and the redemption of a $22.3 million convertible note. A consolidated balance sheet and summary cash flow statement have been included in the tables section of this release.

During the nine months ended Sept. 30, 2014, the Company purchased 212,881 shares of its common stock on the open market at a weighted average price per share of $9.98 pursuant to the open market purchase plan approved on April 7, 2014, for total consideration of $2.1 million.

The Company’s debt increased to $2.35 billion as of September 30, 2014, compared to $2.17 billion at December 31, 2013, primarily related to the financing of 17 new E175 aircraft purchased for our American Airlines fixed-fee agreement partially offset by the Company’s debt repayments. As of September 30, 2014, about 97% of the Company’s debt is at a fixed interest rate. The Company has significant long-term lease obligations for aircraft that are classified as operating leases and are not reflected as liabilities on the Company’s consolidated balance sheet. At a 6% discount factor, the present value of these lease obligations was about $0.51 billion and $0.59 billion as of Sept. 30, 2014, and Dec. 31, 2013, respectively.

Republic Airways Holdings Inc. is an airline holding company that owns Chautauqua Airlines, Republic Airlines (2nd) and Shuttle America.

As of Sept. 30, 2014, the three airlines operated a combined fleet of about 240 aircraft and offered scheduled passenger service on more than 1,300 flights daily to about 100 cities in the U.S. and Canada through fixed-fee flights operated under our major airline partner brands, including American Eagle, Delta Connection, United Express and US Airways Express.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. As previously reported, United Airlines is dropping the Bombardier Q400 services operated by Republic Airlines (2nd). Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) N346NG (msn 4346) arrives at Washington (Reagan National).

United Express-Republic Airlines (2nd) Aircraft Slide Show:

 

United Airlines choses Republic Airways Holdings to operate 50 new Embraer E175s, United will phase out the Q400s

United Airlines (Chicago) today (September 17) announced the company will amend its existing agreement with regional carrier Shuttle America, to add 50 Embraer E175 aircraft. Shuttle America‘s (Indianapolis) parent company, Republic Airways Holdings Inc. (Indianapolis), will determine which of its carriers will operate the new 76-seat aircraft under the United Express brand.

United anticipates deliveries will begin in July 2015 and continue through the summer of 2017. The new aircraft will replace large turboprop airplanes and older, less-efficient aircraft and are in addition to 70 E175s whose deliveries began this year for other carriers to operate as United Express.

E175 Features:

The E175s will offer 12 seats in United First and 64 seats in United Economy, including 16 extra-legroom United Economy Plus seats. The aircraft also offer more personal space for customers, with wider seats and aisles than other regional aircraft; a power outlet at each United First seat; and large overhead bins that can accommodate standard-size carry-on bags.

Additional Fleet Updates:

In addition to expanding the E175 fleet, United plans to make the following changes to its United Express service:

1. Extend the airline’s agreement with Shuttle America on 38 E170s, with new expiration dates beginning in September 2019 and continuing through December 2022; and

2. Begin removing, in 2015, 31 Bombardier Q400s operated by Republic Airlines, a carrier also owned by Republic Airways Holdings Inc. (some of the aircraft will go to Flybe).

In related news, Embraer S.A. and Republic Airways Holdings Inc. (Indianapolis), operator of the largest E-Jets fleet in the world, announced a contract today for the sale and purchase of 50 firm E175 jets. The value of the firm order, which will be included in Embraer’s 2014 third-quarter backlog, is estimated at $2.1 billion, based on 2014 list prices. The aircraft will be operated for United Airlines under the United Express brand. Deliveries are scheduled to begin in the third quarter of 2015 and extend until 2017.

This contract is in addition to the order signed by Embraer and Republic in January 2013 for 47 firm and 47 option E175s – 34 of which have already been delivered. In addition to the new order, Republic maintains 32 options for E175s.

This transaction is in connection with the transfer of Q400 turboprop airplanes currently operated by Republic Airlines to UK’s carrier Flybe Limited. Concurrently, Flybe and Embraer have agreed to reduce by 20 the outstanding order for 24 E175’s the airline has on order backlog. Therefore, the net increase to Embraer’s backlog in the 3rd quarter will be 30 E175 jets.

Republic Airways was one of the first U.S. carriers to fly Embraer E-Jets, operating its first E170 in 2004. With this new order, the Republic Airways E-Jet fleet will consist of 72 E170s and 151 E175s for a total of 223 E-Jets. Republic Airways is also a long-time customer of the ERJ 145 regional jet family with 41 flying as Delta Connection aircraft.

Finally, United Airlines launched its Mercedes-Benz tarmac transportation service at Denver International Airport, offering chauffeured convenience at more airports than any other carrier. With this expansion, United offers the service at all of its U.S. hub airports.

The Mercedes-Benz tarmac transportation service provides the airline’s top frequent flyers with greater comfort and convenience, offering an additional way for these customers to save valuable time when connecting through the airline’s hubs. United will chauffeur selected Global Services members and United Global First customers to their connections in Denver in a Mercedes-Benz GL350 BlueTEC SUV, powered by environmentally friendly, clean diesel technology.

United representatives will meet customers at the aircraft, escort them to the waiting Mercedes-Benz vehicle and drive them across the tarmac to their connecting flight. The expediting service gives priority to customers with close connections.

United also offers the transfer service at its hub airports in Chicago, Houston, New York/Newark, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Washington Dulles.

Along with tarmac transportation, the airline and Mercedes-Benz USA partner to provide promotional packages and bonus miles to United’s MileagePlus Premier members, which include Global Services members, who purchase or lease certain new Mercedes-Benz vehicles. Current offers are available at united.com/Mercedes.

Earlier this year, United opened a new Global Services reception lobby for its top frequent flyers at the airline’s New York hub at Newark Liberty International airport. In October, the airline will open a Global Services reception lobby at San Francisco International Airport. In June, United unveiled an all-new United Club airport lounge and United Global First Lounge at London Heathrow International Airport’s new Terminal 2, The Queen’s Terminal.

Top Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen/AirlinersGallery.com. Shuttle America currently operates 38 Embraer ERJ 170-100SE aircraft for United Airlines under the United Express brand. N637RW (msn 17000051) arrives at Washington’s Reagan National Airport (DCA).

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United Express-Shuttle America: AG Slide Show

United Express-Republic Airlines (2nd): AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen/AirlinersGallery.com. Republic Airlines (2nd) currently operates 31 Bombardier DHC-8-402s (Q400s) for United Airlines at its hubs. N202WQ (msn 4202) arrives at Raleigh-Durham (RDU).

Republic Airways Holdings reports on its third quarter performance, will stop operating Embraer 190s for Frontier

Republic Airways Holdings Inc. (Indianapolis) reported diluted earnings per share from continuing operations for the third quarter of 2013 of $0.09 as compared to $0.13 for the same period in the prior year. During the third quarter of 2013, the company recorded a non-cash impairment charge of $21.2 million, $13.0 million after-tax or $0.25 per diluted share, to reduce the carrying value of seven owned Embraer ERJ 190 aircraft and write-off the maintenance deposits on three leased ERJ 190 aircraft. Income from continuing operations was $4.3 million compared to $6.3 million for the same period last year. Excluding the ERJ 190 impairment charge, pre-tax income from continuing operations was $26.6 million, resulting in an adjusted pre-tax margin from continuing operations of 7.9%. Operating revenues totaled $338.6 million, an increase of 0.4%, compared to $337.4 million for the third quarter of 2012.

The company classified its Frontier business as discontinued operations due to the expected sale during the fourth quarter of 2013. Unless otherwise specified, all financial information disclosed in this release is from continuing operations.

On October 1, 2013, the company reported that it had agreed to sell its Frontier business to an affiliate of Indigo Partners LLC (Indigo). Indigo will acquire all the outstanding shares of Frontier Airlines Holdings, Inc. As part of the transaction, under a separate agreement, Republic will assign to Frontier all of Republic’s rights under agreements relating to the Republic’s Airbus A320neo order. The transaction is subject to receipt of certain third-party consents and releases and other customary closing conditions.

On November 6, 2013, Indigo informed the company that it had satisfied or waived certain key conditions to close under the transaction. The company expects the transaction to close later this month.

For additional information on the divestiture of Frontier, please see the company’s separate news release dated October 1, 2013 and a separate filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Form 8-K filed on October 7, 2013.

“The sale of Frontier will allow our management team to re-focus on our core business,” said Republic Airways Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Bryan Bedford. “We continue to be excited about the growth opportunities for our fixed-fee business and are focused on providing safe, reliable and low-cost solutions to each of our airline partner brands, including American Eagle, Delta Connection, United Express and US Airways Express,” said Bedford.

Third Quarter Review

Operating Revenue Highlights

Total operating revenues increased $1.2 million, or 0.4%, from the third quarter of 2012 to $338.6 million in the third quarter of 2013. Fixed-fee service revenue increased $51.6 million, or 19.2%, to $320.3 million due to an increase in Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) flying with United Airlines, new fixed-fee ERJ 190 charter flying and new ERJ 175 flying with American Airlines. Passenger service revenue decreased $50.5 million due to a significant reduction in the number of ERJ 190 aircraft operating under our pro-rate agreement with Frontier.

Operating Expense Highlights

Fuel costs for Republic decreased $14.1 million to $11.3 million for the quarter, due to a 4.7 million decrease in gallons consumed due to the reduced ERJ 190 pro-rate operations. The fuel cost per gallon, including into-plane taxes and fees, increased to $3.55 per gallon in the third quarter of 2013, compared to $3.21 per gallon in the prior year’s third quarter. The fuel cost per gallon related to our fixed-fee charter agreement is generally higher than our pro-rate operations with Frontier and is treated as a pass through cost under the agreement.

Landing fees and airport rents decreased $6.6 million to $7.9 million for the quarter. Beginning in June 2013, landing fee expense and the related pass-through reimbursement revenue were lower due to United paying airports directly for its associated landing fee costs.

At September 30, 2013, the company had a fleet of ten ERJ 190 aircraft, of which three were leased and seven were owned. Five of the aircraft operate within the fixed-fee charter agreement and the remainder were operating under the pro-rate agreement with Frontier. The company is working to sell, sublease or otherwise place into fixed-fee charter service the five aircraft operating in pro-rate service. During the third quarter of 2013, we recorded a non-cash impairment charge of $21.2 million to reduce the carrying value of our owned E190 aircraft and expensed the deferred maintenance deposits on the leased ERJ 190 aircraft.

Discontinued Operations

Income from discontinued operations, net of tax, increased 52.8% from $19.5 million in the third quarter of 2012 to $29.8 million in this quarter. The improvement is primarily due to Frontier TRASM increasing 6.6% over the prior period and lower fuel costs. The loss on disposal of discontinued operations, net of tax, is currently estimated to be $47.9 million. This estimate will adjust in future periods based on the actual results of the discontinued operations and the closing date of the transaction.

Fleet Highlights

As of September 30, 2013, Republic operated a fleet of 235 aircraft. Within our fixed-fee commercial and charter agreements, we operated 68 aircraft with 44-50 seats and 162 aircraft with 69-99 seats. In addition, we operated five 99-seat aircraft under the pro-rate agreement with Frontier, down from seventeen 99-seat aircraft operated in pro-rate service during the third quarter of 2012.

During the quarter the company took delivery of nine ERJ 175 aircraft operating under its American Airlines capacity purchase agreement and expects to take delivery of an additional ten ERJ 175 aircraft by the end of 2013.

Balance Sheet and Liquidity

The company’s total cash balance decreased $6.3 million to $224.1 million as of September 30, 2013, compared to December 31, 2012. Restricted cash increased $12.6 million, to $32.2 million, from December 31, 2012 due to the escrow requirements under our fixed-fee charter agreements. The Company’s unrestricted cash balance decreased $18.9 million, to $191.9 million, from December 31, 2012. A condensed consolidated balance sheet and cash flow statement have been included in the tables section of this release.

The Company’s debt increased to $2.00 billion as of September 30, 2013, compared to $1.97 billion at December 31, 2012, primarily related to the financing of ERJ 175 aircraft for the American Airlines fixed-fee agreement. As of September 30, 2013, approximately 95% of our debt is at a fixed interest rate. The Company has significant long-term lease obligations for aircraft that are classified as operating leases and are not reflected as liabilities on the Company’s consolidated balance sheet. At a 6% discount factor, the present value of these lease obligations was approximately $0.5 billion and $0.6 billion as of September 30, 2013, and December 31, 2012, respectively.

At September 30, 2013 the company had assets held for sale of $594.8 million and liabilities held for sale of $517.8 million. The $77.0 million of value in net assets held for sale represents the estimated cash proceeds from the sale of Frontier. These amounts will adjust in future periods based on the actual results of discontinued operations and the closing date of the transaction.

Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/AirlinersGallery.com. Republic Airlines (2nd) is now only operating five 99-seat Embraer ERJ 190s for Frontier Airlines (down from 17) under the pro-rate agreement. Once the sale of Frontier to Indigo is completed, Republic will relocate these five aircraft to other areas. Frontier will only operate Airbus aircraft under Indigo. The pictured Republic Airlines (2nd) Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW N164HQ (msn 19000275) with a Hummingbird on the tail taxies at Toronto (Pearson).

Frontier Airlines-Republic Airlines (2nd): AG Slide Show

Republic Airways Holdings to sell Frontier Airlines to an affiliate of Indigo Partners

Republic Airways Holdings Inc. (Indianapolis) today (October 1) announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to sell Frontier Airlines (2nd) (Denver) to an affiliate of Indigo Partners LLC (Phoenix) in an all-cash transaction.

Indigo Partners and its principals, led by managing partner William A. Franke, have a history of investing in airline transportation and related industries and creating successful, differentiated companies. Under the terms of the stock purchase agreement, which has been approved by Republic’s Board of Directors, the buyer, an affiliate of Indigo Partners, will acquire all the outstanding shares of Frontier Airlines Holdings, Inc. in a transaction valued at approximately $145 million, of which $36 million (subject to certain adjustments under the purchase agreement) is to be paid in cash for the equity of Frontier Holdings and the balance is indebtedness that will be retained by Frontier. In addition, Indigo plans to invest additional funds directly in Frontier after the closing.

As part of the transaction, under a separate agreement, Republic will assign to Frontier all of Republic’s rights under agreements relating to the Republic’s Airbus A320neo order in exchange for reimbursement of pre-delivery deposits, which total $32 million.

“We endorse and will support continued efforts to build Frontier into a leading nationwide ultra-low cost carrier (ULCC),” said Franke. “As airline fares continue to move up, passengers need affordable travel alternatives. Our goal will be to meet that need in more markets as we invest in the airline to grow its footprint, while maintaining a commitment to quality service, customer choice and satisfaction and continued employment opportunities for the Frontier team.”

Completion of the transaction is conditioned on agreements being reached with the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA) and FAPA Invest LLC by no later than October 31, 2013, as well as agreement and documentation of other third-party commercial agreements. The transaction is also subject to receipt of required approvals by the Federal Communications Commission for the transfer of Frontier’s radio licenses, the receipt of certain third-party consents and releases and other customary closing conditions.

Assuming satisfaction of the conditions of the agreement, Republic expects the transaction to close in December 2013.

Barclays is serving as financial advisor and Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP is serving as legal advisor to Republic in connection with the transaction. Latham & Watkins LLP is serving as Indigo Partners LLC’s legal advisor.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Frontier’s Airbus A320-214 N208FR (msn 4562) with the Cougar on the tail prepares to land at Baltimore/Washington.

Frontier Airlines: AG Slide Show