Atlantic Coast Reports Third Quarter

PRNewswire-FirstCall DULLES, Va. Oct. 22 :

Atlantic Coast Airlines Holdings, Inc. , parent of Atlantic Coast Airlines
(ACA), today reported—based on accounting principles generally accepted
in the United States (GAAP)—net income of $21.3 million ($0.47 per
diluted share) for the third quarter 2003 compared to net income of $8.5
million ($0.19 per diluted share) for the third quarter 2002. The
company`s results for third quarter 2002 included an aircraft early
retirement charge of $7.6 million (pre-tax) which negatively impacted
third quarter 2002 EPS by 10 cents.
During the third quarter 2003, ACA generated approximately 1.2 billion
available seat miles (ASMs), an increase of 7.6 percent over the same
period last year. The company carried 2,206,540 passengers, an increase of
14.8 percent over the same period last year. Load factor improved 5.7
points to 73.7 percent for the third quarter compared to 68.0 percent in
the third quarter 2002.
ACA currently operates as United Express and Delta Connection in the
Eastern and Midwestern United States as well as Canada. On July 28, 2003,
ACA announced plans to establish a new, independent low-fare airline to be
based at Washington Dulles International Airport. The company has a fleet
of 146 aircraft-including a total of 118 regional jets-and offers over 840
daily departures, serving 84 destinations. ACA employs over 4,800 aviation
Statements in this press release and by company executives regarding its
implementation of new business strategies and its relationship with United
Airlines, Inc., regarding the unsolicited acquisition proposal by Mesa Air
Group, Inc. and other matters, as well as regarding operations, earnings,
revenues and costs, represent forward-looking information. A number of
risks and uncertainties exist which could cause actual results to differ
materially from these projected results. Such risks and uncertainties
include, among others: the costs of reviewing and responding to the
unsolicited proposal, and other impacts of the proposal on the company`s
operations; United`s option under bankruptcy rules to assume or reject the
existing United Express Agreement; the timing of any disengagement by the
company as a United Express carrier under the United Express Agreement or
pursuant to bankruptcy court proceedings and impact on the company`s
ability to operate an independent airline; the ability to effectively
implement its low-fare business strategy utilizing regional jets; the
ability to acquire and obtain financing for any additional aircraft
intended to be operated; the availability of additional or alternative
business opportunities for the company`s operations; the effects of
United`s bankruptcy proceedings; the continued financial health of Delta
Air Lines, Inc., and the ability and willingness of Delta to continue to
deploy the company`s aircraft and to utilize and pay for scheduled service
at agreed upon rates; availability and cost of product support for the
company`s 328JET aircraft; unexpected costs arising from the insolvency of
Fairchild Dornier; general economic and industry conditions; additional
acts of war or terrorism; and risks and uncertainties arising from the
events of September 11, any of which may impact the company, its aircraft
manufacturers and its other suppliers in ways that the company is not
currently able to predict. Certain of these and other risk factors are
more fully disclosed under “Risk Factors” and “Management`s Discussion and
Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” in the
company`s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2002
and in its Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the six-month period ended
June 30, 2003. These statements are made as of October 22, 2003 and ACA
undertakes no obligation to update any such forward-looking information,
including as a result of any new information, future events, changed
expectations or otherwise.