Inc., (NYSE:AAI), the parent company of AirTran Airways, today
reported a net loss for the quarter ending March 31, 2002, of $3.0
million, or $0.04 per diluted share, versus net income of $8.8
million, or $0.12 per diluted share in the year-earlier quarter.
Included in the first quarter results was a $5.6 million
after-tax, non-cash credit adjustment reducing other expense, net
that was related to the change in value of our fuel-related
derivative contracts. These contracts were terminated during the first
quarter of 2002. Also included in the first quarter results was an
income tax benefit of $0.8 million resulting from a reduction in the
company`s tax liability as a result of an economic stimulus package
recently passed by Congress. Without these adjustments, AirTran
Airways` net loss was $9.4 million or $0.13 per diluted share.
Commenting on the quarter`s performance, Joe Leonard, AirTran
Airways` chairman and chief executive officer, said, “During the first
quarter of 2002, AirTran Airways recorded net income for the month of
March. This is a testament to the tireless efforts of all of our
employees as well as to the strength of our low-fare business model.”
Leonard added, “AirTran Airways is committed to being the low-fare
leader dedicated to providing our customers with the best value for
their travel dollars.”
Traffic, or revenue passenger miles (RPMs), increased 6.1 percent
over the year-earlier period setting a new first quarter record.
Capacity, or available seat miles (ASMs), increased 12.8 percent
reflecting additional Boeing 717 aircraft in service during the
current period. Load factor declined 4.2 points to 66.3 percent.
AirTran Airways served 2.1 million passengers in the first quarter of
2002, an increase of 1.8 percent over the first quarter of 2001.
Unit costs on both an operating and non-fuel basis improved
year-over-year. Operating cost per ASM improved 7.7 percent to 9.02
cents per mile, compared to 9.77 cents, helped in part by the
reduction in fuel prices year-over-year. Excluding the effect of the
lower fuel costs, AirTran Airways` non-fuel unit costs declined 4.7
percent to 7.14 cents per mile from 7.49 cents.
Stan Gadek, AirTran Airways` senior vice president and chief
financial officer, said, “Our unit costs continue to improve as we
take additional deliveries of Boeing 717 aircraft. The outstanding
economics of this airplane coupled with a company-wide cost
containment program helped to achieve these significant cost