CAE reports first quarter fiscal 2023 results

  • Revenue of $933.3 million vs. $752.7 million in prior year
  • Earnings per share (EPS) of $0.01 vs. $0.16 in prior year
  • Adjusted EPS(1) of $0.06 vs. $0.19 ($0.15 ex. COVID-19 government support programs(2)) in prior year
  • Operating income of $39.4 million vs. $86.2 million in prior year
  • Adjusted segment operating income(3) of $60.9 million vs. $98.4 million ($84.8 million ex. COVID-19 government support programs(4)) in prior year
  • Orders(5) of $1,049.1 million for a record $10.0 billion backlog(5) and 1.12x book-to-sales ratio(5)
  • Recorded $28.9 million (non-cash) in unfavourable U.S. Defense contract profit adjustments
  • Revised annual growth outlook to mid-20% (vs. mid-30%) consolidated adjusted segment operating income growth; three-year (FY23-FY25) EPS compound growth rate target maintained at mid-20%

Montreal, Canada, August 10, 2022 – (NYSE: CAE; TSX: CAE)

CAE today reported revenue of $933.3 million for the first quarter of fiscal 2023, compared with $752.7 million in the first quarter last year. First quarter net income attributable to equity holders was $1.7 million ($0.01 per share) compared to $46.4 million ($0.16 per share) last year. Adjusted net income(6) in the first quarter of fiscal 2023 was $17.6 million ($0.06 per share) compared to $55.6 million ($0.19 per share) last year.

Operating income this quarter was $39.4 million (4.2% of revenue), compared to $86.2 million (11.5% of revenue) last year. First quarter adjusted segment operating income was $60.9 million (6.5% of revenue) compared to $98.4 million (13.1% of revenue) last year. Adjusted segment operating income excluding COVID-19 government support programs, of which there have been none since the first quarter of fiscal 2022, was also $60.9 million (6.5% of revenue) compared to $84.8 million (11.3% of revenue) last year. Adjusted segment operating income this quarter includes $28.9 million in unfavourable contract profit adjustments in Defense, involving two programs in the U.S. All financial information is in Canadian dollars unless otherwise indicated.

Summary of consolidated results

(amounts in millions, except per share amounts)Q1-2023Q1-2022Variance %
Revenue$ 933.3$ 752.724%
Operating income$ 39.4$ 86.2(54%)
Adjusted segment operating income (SOI)$ 60.9$ 98.4(38%)
As a % of revenue% 6.5% 13.1 
Adjusted SOI excluding COVID-19 government support programs$ 60.9$ 84.8(28%)
As a % of revenue% 6.5% 11.3 
Net income$ 3.7$ 47.3(92%)
Net income attributable to equity holders of the Company$ 1.7$ 46.4(96%)
Basic and diluted earnings per share (EPS)$ 0.01$ 0.16(94%)
Adjusted net income$ 17.6$ 55.6(68%)
Adjusted EPS$ 0.06$ 0.19(68%)
Adjusted net income excluding COVID-19 government support programs (7)$ 17.6$ 45.6(61%)
Adjusted EPS excluding COVID-19 government support programs$ 0.06$ 0.15(60%)
Order intake$ 1,049.1$ 521.5101%
Total backlog$ 10,025.6$ 7,934.126%

“We had a mixed performance in the first quarter, with Civil delivering results in line with our view for strong annual growth, while Defense came in well short of our expectations, as a result of discrete program charges and near-term headwinds in this early stage of its multi-year growth journey,” said Marc Parent, CAE’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “Despite a challenging global environment, we secured over $1 billion in total orders for a record $10 billion backlog and 1.12 times book-to-sales ratio. In Civil, we booked $522 million in orders for a 1.09 times book-to-sales ratio, including long-term training agreements with airlines and business aircraft operators, and 11 full-flight simulator sales. In Defense, we booked orders for training and mission support solutions valued at $488 million for 1.18 times book-to-sales. And in Healthcare, we continued to drive double-digit revenue growth with our innovative solutions and capable team.”

On CAE’s revised outlook, Parent added, “we are lowering our outlook for the current fiscal year to mid-twenty percent consolidated adjusted segment operating income growth to account for the two U.S. program charges already incurred in Defense, and to reflect the more acute, sector-wide headwinds we are now experiencing, namely supply chain pressures, labour shortages, and a slower defence contracting environment. We previously indicated our expectation of a back-half-weighted performance in Defense this fiscal year, as we manage through the effects of a protracted period of less than one book-to-sales and begin to ramp up new orders in the second half. The additional Defense headwinds have made this weighting more pronounced, and we expect them to gradually abate through the course of the fiscal year. In our Civil business, we expect continued strong growth, driven largely by the cyclical aviation recovery underway and elevated demand for pilot training in commercial and business jet segments, as evidenced by robust full-flight simulator sales and the exclusive long-term training agreements we have secured in recent quarters with virtually all major airlines in the Americas. I believe our success there provides a compelling blueprint for what a broader global market recovery holds for CAE, and we are poised to continue growing market share from an expanded pipeline of Civil training opportunities. For CAE overall, order intake remains a key leading indicator of our progress along the path to becoming a larger, more resilient, and more profitable company. We greatly enhanced our position and expanded our addressable market over the last couple of years, and I have complete confidence in our team’s ability to maintain a strong order momentum and drive superior and sustainable growth and profits over the long-term. Broadly speaking, the underlying trendlines of our multi-year progress are very much intact, and my conviction in CAE’s long-term growth outlook is resolute. We continue to target a three-year EPS compound growth rate in the mid-twenty percent range.”

Civil Aviation (Civil)

First quarter Civil revenue was $480.4 million vs. $432.9 million in the first quarter last year. Operating income was $75.4 million compared to $59.0 million in the same quarter last year. Adjusted segment operating income was $86.6 million (18.0% of revenue) compared to $69.7 million (16.1% of revenue) in the first quarter last year. Adjusted segment operating income excluding COVID-19 government support programs, of which there was none this quarter, was also $86.6 million (18.0% of revenue) compared to $64.5 million (14.9% of revenue) in the same quarter last year. During the quarter, Civil delivered ten full-flight simulators (FFSs)(8) to customers and first quarter Civil training centre utilization(9) was 71%.

During the quarter, Civil signed training solutions contracts valued at $521.5 million, including contracts for 11 FFSs sales. Notable training contracts for the quarter include several exclusive training agreements in the Americas, adding to the exclusive training agreements Civil now holds with most major airlines in the region. They include a three-year extension to a long-term exclusive commercial aviation training agreement with Mesa Airlines, a five-year exclusive training agreement with United Airlines, a five-year exclusive training agreement with JetBlue, and a ten-year exclusive training agreement with another major North American airline. In the U.K., Civil expanded its existing 12-year exclusive commercial aviation training agreement with Virgin Atlantic to include the Boeing 787 platform, now covering all their existing aircraft platforms under the training exclusivity.  In business aviation, Civil signed a three-year training agreement with Tag Aviation Holdings, and a three-year agreement with the NATO Support and Procurement Agency.  

The Civil book-to-sales ratio was 1.09x for the quarter and 1.32x for the last 12 months. The Civil backlog at the end of the quarter was $5.0 billion.

Summary of Civil Aviation results

(amounts in millions, except SEU, FFSs)Q1-2023Q1-2022Variance %
Revenue$ 480.4$ 432.911%
Operating income$ 75.4$ 59.028%
Adjusted segment operating income (SOI)$ 86.6$ 69.724%
As a % of revenue% 18.0% 16.1 
Adjusted SOI excluding COVID-19 government support programs$ 86.6$ 64.534%
As a % of revenue% 18.0% 14.9 
Order intake$ 521.5$ 338.154%
Total backlog$ 4,993.2$ 4,200.419%
Simulator equivalent unit (SEU)(10) 2502433%
FFSs in CAE’s network (8)318319—%
FFS deliveries1011(9%)
Utilization rate% 71% 5627%

Defense and Security (Defense)

First quarter Defense revenue was $413.3 million, up 43% compared to the first quarter last year. Operating loss was $30.3 million compared to an income of $22.6 million in the same quarter last year. Adjusted segment operating loss was $21.2 million, compared to an income of $23.7 million (8.2% of revenue) in the first quarter last year. Adjusted segment operating loss excluding COVID-19 government support programs, of which there was none this quarter, was also $21.2 million compared to an income of $15.7 million (5.4% of revenue) in the same quarter last year. The decrease compared to the first quarter of fiscal 2022 was driven mainly by unfavourable contract profit adjustments, which totaled $28.9 million on a legacy L3H MT classified U.S. program and a legacy CAE U.S. training program. This followed the reassessment of cost estimates, due in part from, delays and meeting customer requirements on scope and timing, as well as a change in expectations for the expansion of program requirements, following recent discussions with the customers. Additional challenges during the quarter stemmed from staffing shortages, supply chain pressures, slower than expected order awards, and higher bid and proposal costs associated with the pursuit of a larger Defense pipeline.

Defense booked orders for $488.0 million, including the continuation of last year’s success of winning contracts across all five domains. In the Air domain, our joint venture with Leonardo Helicopter entered a contract with the Netherlands Ministry of Defence to provide a training system in support of the Joint NH90 Training Program. In Land, the US Army Synthetic Training Environment Cross Functional Team (STE CFT) awarded CAE a task order to develop a Soldier Virtual Trainer (SVT) Prototype, which is a solution to deliver immersive capabilities that empower Soldier-led training at the point-of-need. In the Sea domain, in partnership with Lockheed Martin, we were awarded a design support contract on the Royal Canadian Navy’s next generation frigates or Canadian Surface Combatant (CSC). In Space, we were awarded a prototype contract from Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) Space Vehicle Directorate’s Simulation & Technology Assessment Branch. The prototype is part of an initiative with the Space Technology Advanced Research – Fast-tracking Innovative Software and Hardware (STAR-FISH). And in the Cyber domain, as part of a larger team, we secured a position on the approximately $1 billion Agile Cyber Technology (ACT 3) ID/IQ contract vehicle.  

The Defense book-to-sales ratio was 1.18x for the quarter and 1.31x for the last 12 months (excluding contract options). The Defense backlog, including options and CAE’s interest in joint ventures, at the end of the quarter was $5.0 billion. The Defense pipeline remains strong with some $9.0 billion of bids and proposals pending customer decisions.

Summary of Defense and Security results

(amounts in millions)Q1-2023Q1-2022Variance %
Revenue$ 413.3$ 288.243%
Operating (loss) income$ (30.3)$ 22.6(234%)
Adjusted segment operating (loss) income (SOI)$ (21.2)$ 23.7(189%)
As a % of revenue% —% 8.2 
Adjusted SOI excluding COVID-19 government support programs$ (21.2)$ 15.7(235%)
As a % of revenue% —% 5.4 
Order intake$ 488.0$ 151.8221%
Total backlog$ 5,032.4$ 3,733.735%

Healthcare

First quarter Healthcare revenue was $39.6 million, vs. $31.6 million in the first quarter last year. Operating loss was $5.7 million compared to an income of $4.6 million in the same quarter last year. Adjusted segment operating loss was $4.5 million compared to an income of $5.0 million (15.8% of revenue) in the first quarter last year. Adjusted segment operating loss excluding COVID-19 government support programs, of which there was none this quarter, was also $4.5 million, compared to an income of $4.6 million (14.6% of revenue) in the same quarter last year. Healthcare continued to deliver year-over-year quarterly revenue growth. The decrease in adjusted segment operating income compared to the first quarter of fiscal 2022 was mainly due to higher net research and development costs and higher investments in selling, general and administrative expenses to support growth.

Healthcare expanded its relationship with the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science, finalizing a significant partnership for its LearningSpace centre management solution for its simulation centre in Rochester, Minnesota. Healthcare also increased its presence and visibility in the U.S. in part through efforts supported by CARES Act funding and Mon Health hospital system, to address West Virginia’s increased demand for nurses with three mobile training units.

Healthcare’s leadership transitioned during the quarter to Jeff Evans, on an interim basis. Jeff formerly led the business unit’s sales organization and has been instrumental in driving Healthcare’s extended period of double-digit quarterly revenue growth.

Summary of Healthcare results

(amounts in millions)Q1-2023Q1-2022Variance %
Revenue$ 39.6$ 31.625%
Operating (loss) income$ (5.7)$ 4.6(224%)
Adjusted segment operating (loss) income (SOI)$ (4.5)$ 5.0(190%)
As a % of revenue% —% 15.8 
Adjusted SOI excluding COVID-19 government support programs$ (4.5)$ 4.6(198%)
As a % of revenue% —% 14.6 

Additional financial highlights

CAE incurred restructuring, integration and acquisition costs of $21.5 million during the first quarter of fiscal 2023, including $16 million related to the L3H MT and AirCentre acquisitions.

Net cash used in operating activities was $162.6 million for the quarter, compared to $129.1 million in the first quarter last year. Free cash flow(11) was negative $182.4 million for the quarter compared to negative $147.6 million in the first quarter last year. The decrease was mainly due to a decrease in cash provided by operating activities, partially offset by a lower investment in non-cash working capital. CAE usually sees a higher level of investment in non-cash working capital accounts during the first half of the fiscal year and tends to see a portion of these investments reverse in the second half.

Income tax recovery this quarter amounted to $0.5 million, representing a negative effective tax rate of 16%, compared to a positive effective tax rate of 18% for the first quarter last year. The income tax rate was impacted by restructuring, integration and acquisition costs, and excluding these costs the income tax rate used to determine adjusted net income and adjusted EPS was 21% this quarter and 19% in the first quarter of last year. On this basis, the increase in the tax rate was mainly attributable to a beneficial impact on certain tax assets last year, partially offset by the change in the mix of income from various jurisdictions.

Growth and maintenance capital expenditures(12) totaled $73.9 million this quarter.

Net debt(13) at the end of the quarter was $3,025.9 million for a net debt-to-adjusted EBITDA(14) of 4.15x. This compares to net debt of $2,700.1 million and a net debt-to-adjusted EBITDA of 3.58x at the end of the preceding quarter. CAE’s total available liquidity as at June 30, 2022 was approximately $1.4 billion.

Adjusted return on capital employed (ROCE)(15) was 5.2% this quarter compared to 6.2% last quarter and 6.7% in the first quarter last year. Adjusted ROCE excluding COVID-19 government support programs was 5.2% this quarter compared to 6.1% last quarter and 5.3% in the first quarter last year.

Management outlook

Since 2020, CAE has been carrying out a growth strategy which it believes will enable it to emerge from the pandemic a bigger, stronger, and more profitable company than ever before. Specifically, as a waypoint along its journey to cyclical recovery and beyond, the Company is targeting a consolidated adjusted segment operating margin of approximately 17% by the time its markets are generally recovered, with steady room for further improvement thereafter. It expects to reach this level of profitability on a significantly larger base of business with a post-pandemic capital structure that will allow the Company to sustain ample flexibility to further invest in its future. The Company is targeting a three-year (FY23-FY25) EPS compound growth rate in the mid-20% range.

Current headwinds include the ongoing global pandemic, geopolitical tensions and the war in Ukraine, decades- high inflation, slower global economic growth, and acute supply chain and labor shortages – any of which may influence the exact timing and rate of market recovery. Notwithstanding the additional volatility induced by these factors, and more acute short-term headwinds for Defense, management maintains a highly positive view of its growth potential over a multi-year period.

Expected secular trends are highly favorable for all three of the Company’s core business segments. Greater desire by airlines to entrust CAE with their critical training and digital operational support and crew management needs, higher expected pilot demand and strong growth in business jet travel demand are enduring positives for the Civil business. Tailwinds that favour the Defense business include the shift in national defence priorities to an increased focus on near-peer threats and the recognition of the sharply increased need for digital immersion-based synthetic solutions. Healthcare is poised to leverage opportunities presented by an acute nursing shortage and rising demand for Public Safety and Security.

The Company believes there is considerable pent-up demand for air travel, and the rate of Civil’s recovery to pre-pandemic levels and beyond is expected to continue to be driven in large part by the easing of travel restrictions. Civil’s strong training performance in the Americas and FFS order activity, provide a compelling blueprint for the potential of a broader global recovery. In fiscal year 2023, in addition to continuing to grow its share of the aviation training market and expanding its position in digital flight services, Civil expects to maintain its leading share of FFS sales and to deliver upwards of 40 FFSs to customers worldwide, with a higher proportion of units expected to be delivered in second half of the fiscal year.

CAE’s Defense segment is also on a multi-year path to becoming an even bigger and more profitable business. Defense is closely aligned with its customers’ utmost priorities focused on defending freedom in the face of near-peer threats. In the last two years, Defense has established itself as the world’s leading platform agnostic, global training and simulation pure play defence business. This is expected to bring increased potential to capture business around the world, accelerated by the acquisition of L3H MT and the expanded capability and customer set the combined entity possesses. This is evidenced by the trailing 12-month book-to-sales ratio of 1.31x. Current geopolitical events have galvanized national defence priorities in the U.S. and across NATO, and management expects increased spending and specific prioritization on defence readiness to translate into additional opportunities for CAE in the years ahead. Defense is expected to continue making good progress with the integration of L3H MT acquisition in fiscal 2023 and to fully realize $35 to $45 million of cost synergies by fiscal year 2024.

In the near term, Defense is expected to continue working its way through the lagging effects of a protracted period of lower than one annual book-to-sales ratios. Defense also anticipates some continuation of the first-quarter supply chain and labor challenges in subsequent quarters and for those impacts to be largely mitigated by year end, with sequential progress each quarter. Staffing shortages negatively impact Defense’s execution and profitability on firm-fixed-price programs and its ability to generate revenue on cost-plus contracts. Supply chain pressures pose additional challenges that result from higher costs, execution delays and associated inefficiencies. As the year progresses, Defense expects to be able to partially offset these impacts through internal cost reduction and efficiency initiatives currently underway. The Russian invasion of Ukraine has galvanized NATO and allied nation’s resolve vis-a-vis increased defence spending; however, the immediate priority on operational needs is contributing to training program award delays in the short-term. CAE continues to expect superior Defense growth over a multi-year period to be driven by the progressive realization of synergies related to the L3H MT integration and the translation of order intake and bid activity into revenue. 

In Healthcare, the long-term potential is for it to become a more material and profitable business within CAE as it gains share in the healthcare simulation and training market and continues to build on its double-digit revenue growth momentum.

For the current fiscal year 2023, CAE now expects to deliver mid-20% consolidated adjusted segment operating income growth (mid-30% previously), weighted more heavily to the second half of the year.

Total capital expenditures are expected to be approximately $250 million in fiscal year 2023, primarily in support of sustainable and accretive growth opportunities. The Company usually sees a higher investment in non-cash working capital accounts in the first half of the fiscal year, and as in previous years, management expects a portion of the non-cash working capital investment to reverse in the second half. The Company continues to target a 100% conversion of adjusted net income to free cash flow for the year. Concurrent with its continued pursuit of attractive growth opportunities, CAE expects net debt-to-adjusted EBITDA to decrease to a ratio of below three times (3x) within the next 15 months. CAE expects its effective income tax rate to increase to approximately 22% going forward, reflecting some of the recent changes to global tax regimes.

Management’s outlook for fiscal year 2023 and the above targets and expectations constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of applicable securities laws, and are based on a number of assumptions, including in relation to prevailing market conditions, macroeconomic and geopolitical factors, supply chains and labor markets, and the timing and degree of easing of global COVID-19-related mobility restrictions. Air travel is a major driver for CAE’s business and management relies on analysis from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) to inform its assumptions about the rate and profile of recovery in its key civil aviation market. Additionally, as the basis of its fiscal year 2023 outlook, management assumes no further disruptions to the global economy, air traffic, CAE’s operations, and its ability to deliver products and services. Expectations are also subject to a number of risks and uncertainties and based on assumptions about customer receptivity to CAE’s training solutions and operational support solutions as well as material assumptions contained in this press release, quarterly MD&A and in CAE’s fiscal year 2022 MD&A. Please see the sections below entitled: “Caution concerning forward-looking statements”“Material assumptions” and “Material risks”.

Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG)

During the quarter, CAE issued its FY22 Annual Activity and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) report, which is a single source of information in key areas demonstrating how its solutions and activities created impact across the three central dimensions of sustainability: environmental, social and governance (ESG). It also demonstrates how CAE’s ESG strategy is grounded in its core purpose: safety. The report highlighted CAE’s enhanced Sustainability governance and updated ESG materiality matrix that gives CAE greater confidence that it is investing in the CSR initiatives that matter most. CAE continues its reporting according to the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), the Task force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) and the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB).

Underscoring its commitment to ESG leadership, CAE created a new executive committee-level position of Chief Sustainability Officer and Senior Vice President, Stakeholder Engagement, and bolstered its diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) program with another new leadership role, Chief DE&I Officer.

In July 2022, at the Farnborough Air Show, CAE made significant announcements that support its efforts to reduce its carbon footprint and elevate its commitment as the first carbon neutral Canadian Aerospace company and contribute to the sustainability of its industry. CAE will be advancing green aviation technology with the development of an electric conversion kit for Piper Archer aircraft. It expects to convert two-thirds of its Piper Aircraft training fleet at its flight schools around the world, while it develops the training for future pilots to operate electric aircraft. In addition, CAE has partnered with multiple Advanced Air Mobility key players by taking a leadership role in the development of this all-electric air transport industry and was more recently selected by Vertical Aerospace to be their pilot training partner for their launch eVTOL aircraft.

To learn more about CAE’s corporate sustainability roadmap and achievements, the report can be downloaded at https://www.cae.com/social-responsibility/.