Alaska Air earns record 2011 profit of $244.5 million

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Published: January 27, 2012

Alaska Air Group (AAG), parent of Alaska Airlines (AS) and Horizon Air, reported 2011 net income of $ 244.5 million, up 2.6% from $ 225.1 million year-over-year, in its second consecutive year of record earnings.

AAG Chairman and CEO Bill Ayer told investors and reporters that the improvement was the result of company initiatives, including “schedule optimization and network expansion, high load factors, lower non-fuel unit costs and operational performance.”

Ayer called the group’s 2011 performance the “best fiscal year in adjusted profit in our history,” although fourth-quarter earnings were down slightly from the year-ago quarter.

Consolidated full-year revenue totaled $ 4.32 billion, up 12.7% from 2010, while expenses climbed 15.1% to $ 3.87 billion, producing an operating income of $ 448.9 million, down 4.8% from a $ 471.6 million operating profit in the prior year.

AS’s mainline traffic rose 11% to 22.6 billion RPMs on an 8.5% lift in capacity to 26.52 billion ASMs, producing a load factor of 85.2%, up 1.9 points. Yield increased 3.5% to 14.06 cents as PRASM increased 5.9% to 11.98 cents. CASM ex-fuel lowered 3.2% to 7.60 cents.

AAG’s fourth-quarter net income was $ 64 million, down 1.2% from a $ 64.8 million profit in the year-ago quarter. Revenue rose 9% to $ 1.04 billion, while expenses rose 10.8% to $ 930.2 million, producing an operating profit of $ 114.1 million, down 4.4% from a $ 119.3 million profit in the fourth-quarter 2010.

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