Dow Jones Business News
JetBlue Airways 4th-Quarter Net Rose 29%
Thursday January 29, 7:51 am ET
YORK (Dow Jones)--JetBlue Airways Corp. (NasdaqNM:JBLU - News) said Thursday that its fourth-quarter profits rose 29% from year-ago levels in part due to higher passenger revenue.
In a press release, the New York low-cost airline reported net income of $19.5 million, or 17 cents a diluted share, for the period ended Dec. 31, compared with $15.2 million, or 15 cents a diluted share, a year earlier.
Wall Street had expected the carrier to earn 17 cents a share, according to a mean estimate of 12 analysts surveyed by Thomson First Call (News - Websites) .
"We begin 2004 from a strong position characterized by excellent cost control diligence, a healthy balance sheet, and a top rated product offering delivered by dedicated crewmembers," said David Neeleman, JetBlue's chairman and chief executive, in a statement. "These key advantages give us tremendous confidence in our continued growth through what is expected to be a very competitive year."
Revenue rose 40.4% to $262.9 million in the quarter, up from $187.3 million in the prior-year period. Passenger revenue rose 39.8% to $253.7 million.
The airline's fourth-quarter load factor, or percentage of seats filled, was 83.1%, up from 81.8% a year earlier.
JetBlue, which operates a fleet of 55 Airbus A320 aircraft, said it plans to add another 14 A320s to its fleet in 2004. The airline also said it has on order 100 Embraer 190 aircraft, with options for an additional 100 scheduled to begin delivery in mid 2005.
The airline will discuss its fourth-quarter results in more detail on a conference call at 10 a.m. EST today.
JetBlue Airways Corp. - New York
4th Quar Dec. 31:
Revenue $262,944,000 $187,258,000
Net income 19,540,000 15,163,000
Avg shrs (diluted) 112,081,000 102,287,000
Net income .17 .15
Revenue $998,351,000 $635,191,000
Net income a 103,898,000 54,908,000
Avg shrs (diluted) 107,541,000 97,653,000
Net income a .97 .56
a. Includes $11.5 million of compensation related to the Emergency War Time Supplemental Appropriations Act, which increased earnings by 11 cents a diluted share.
-By Chad Bray; Dow Jones Newswires; 201-938-5400