Category Archives: WestJet Airlines

The Mile-High City for a low price

WestJet adds Denver/Calgary to growing network

CALGARYAug. 14, 2017 /CNW/ – WestJet announced today it will begin serving Denver International Airport (DEN) daily from Calgary International Airport (YYC) starting March 8, 2018.
“Calgarians have enjoyed WestJet’s low fares and great guest experience since our inception and we are proud to bring our trusted brand to the Mile-High City, Denver,” said Ed Sims, WestJet Executive Vice-President, Commercial.    “With its sophisticated business economy and stunning mountain scenery, Denver is a natural for the WestJet network.    Connecting through Calgary will also allow Denver’s business and leisure travellers year round access to the broader Canadian WestJet network.”
Canada ranks as Colorado’s largest trading partner, accounting for nearly $1.4 billion in exports in 2016.     In addition, Canada ranks as the second-largest foreign investor in Colorado, only the United Kingdom has more corporate presence.
“We welcome WestJet’s investment in our market which further strengthens Denver’s global brand,” said Denver Mayor Michael B. Hancock.     “This new service will continue to boost our economy, with an estimated statewide economic impact of nearly $19 million annually and the creation of more than 150 new jobs.”
Calgary ranks as Denver’s third-largest market in Canada with nearly 150 people traveling between the two cities each day.    Overall Canada ranks as Denver’s second-largest international market in terms of demand, accounting for 12 per cent of total international travel.
“WestJet is an airline we have long courted, and we are pleased the carrier has chosen Denver as its newest transborder destination,” said Kim DayDenver International Airport, CEO.  “Not only are Denver and Calgary similar cities in terms of size and geography, but Denver International Airport and WestJet share similar values in terms of a strong commitment to customer service and a focus on innovation.”
“This announcement of non-stop service to DenverCalgary’s sister city, is a welcome addition to the 56 destinations that WestJet currently serves out of YYC,” said Bob Sartor, President and CEO for The Calgary Airport Authority.    “With several new destinations added and increases in frequencies this year, we know that WestJet is committed to growing their extensive route network out of YYC, benefiting Albertans looking to access top destinations around the world.”
Canada values its relationships with Colorado – both cultural and economic – very deeply, and Denver International Airport is the gateway that helps us keep those connections strong,” said Stéphane Lessard, Consul General of Canada in Denver.    “As this state’s number one international trading partner, it makes sense that the list of great Canadian companies with investments in this state continues to grow as we now welcome WestJet to Mile High.”

Details of WestJet’s new non-stop service to Denver, Colorado:

Route

Frequency

Departing

Arriving

Effective

Calgary – Denver

Daily

10:10 a.m.

12:26 p.m.

March 8, 2018

Denver – Calgary

Daily

1:15 p.m.

3:46 p.m.

March 8, 2018

 

WestJet 2Q net profit up 32%; eyes 787 flights to China

WestJet earned a second-quarter 2017 net profit of C$48.4 million ($37.2 million), up 32% over net income of C$36.7 million in the 2016 June quarter, marking its 49th consecutive profitable quarter.
The strong financial performance buttresses Calgary-based WestJet, Canada’s second largest airline, as it pursues two major initiatives: the establishment of an ultra low-cost carrier (ULCC) subsidiary and the introduction of Boeing 787-9 aircraft into its fleet.    The ULCC will begin operations in June 2018, CEO Gregg Saretsky told reporters and analysts during an Aug. 1 conference call. The carrier’s first of 10 787-9s on firm order is scheduled to arrive in the 2019 first quarter.   WestJet plans to use 787-9s to fly to both Europe and Asia, with a particular interest in operating flights between Canada and China, according to Saretsky.
WestJet has codeshare relationships with Shanghai-based China Eastern Airlines and Guangzhou-based China Southern Airlines, Saretsky noted.    “We’re very well positioned to leverage those partnerships,” he said, describing the Canada-China air travel market as “a huge market with a massive growth rate.  ” The rapid rate of growth in travel between Canada and China, particularly a growing number of Chinese traveling to Canada, “is perfectly timed for the arrival of our 787 fleet,” he said.
Saretsky said WestJet “will be introducing a lie-flat business class” on the 787-9 that will be priced in line with what other carriers are charging for 787 business-class seats.the ULCC, which has not yet been named, the carrier’s initial fleet of 10 high-density 737NGs (to be sourced from WestJet’s mainline fleet) will fly an average stage length of 1,000 miles, Saretsky said.    “Hiring is underway” to staff the ULCC, he added. “We have a small headquarters staff.”    He expects Transport Canada approval for the ULCC in the 2018 first quarter.
WestJet’s 2Q revenue rose 11.1%
The carrier’s 2Q traffic increased 8.9% YOY to 6.3 billion RPMs on a 6.3% lift in capacity to 7.6 billion ASMs, producing a load factor of 82.8%, up 2 points.    Yield improved 2.1% to C$0.17.
CFO Harry Taylor said WestJet continues to maintain control over its costs, noting that CASM ex-fuel declined 0.9% YOY in the second quarter.    “Our business fundamentals remain strong,” he said. Aircraft fuel is “a significant expense,” Taylor acknowledged.    WestJet’s fuel costs rose 23.2% YOY to C$224.9 million in the second quarter.
year-over-year (YOY) to C$1.05 billion while expenses increased 10% to C$977 million, producing operating income of C$78 million, up 27% over an operating profit of C$61.4 million in the prior-year period.

WestJet reports second quarter net earnings of $48 million, up 32 per cent

WestJet to purchase Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners (CNW Group/WestJet)

  • Reports diluted EPS of $0.41 cents, up 36.7 per cent
  • Achieves second best second quarter EPS in its 21 year history
  • Attains its 49th consecutive profitable quarter
  • Delivers a record second quarter load factor
  • Flies a record 5.9 million guests in the second quarter
  • Announces a normal course issuer bid

CALGARYAug. 1, 2017 /CNW/ – WestJet (TSX: WJA) today announced its second quarter results for 2017, with net earnings of $48.4 million, or $0.41 per fully diluted share, as compared with the net earnings of $36.7 million, or $0.30 per fully diluted share reported in the second quarter of 2016, up 32.0 per cent and 36.7 per cent, respectively.    WestJet achieved its 49thconsecutive quarter of profitability and flew a record 5.9 million guests. Based on the trailing twelve months, the airline achieved a return on invested capital of 9.8 per cent, compared with the 10.0 per cent reported in the previous quarter.
“I am very pleased with the positive momentum we are seeing in our business as we reported second quarter earnings growth, margin expansion, double digit revenue growth, and for the second consecutive quarter positive year over year RASM growth.    Clearly our business fundamentals are strong and we are confident that the strategic initiatives we are pursuing position us for continued profitable growth,” said WestJet President and CEO Gregg Saretsky.    “These results are a great start to our November profit share, thanks to the commitment and passion of our more than 12,000 WestJetters who continue to deliver our brand of friendly caring service.”

Operating highlights (stated in Canadian dollars)

Q2 2017

Q2 2016

Change

Year-to-
date 2017

Year-to-
date 2016

Change

Net earnings (millions)

$48.4

$36.7

32.0%

$96.7

$124.3

(22.2%)

Diluted earnings per share

$0.41

$0.30

36.7%

$0.82

$1.02

(19.6%)

Total revenue (millions)

$1,055.0

$949.3

11.1%

$2,169.3

$1,980.8

9.5%

Operating margin

7.4%

6.5%

0.9 pts

7.3%

9.3%

(2.0 pts)

ASMs (available seat miles) (billions)

7.564

7.116

6.3%

15.263

14.410

5.9%

RPMs (revenue passenger miles) (billions)

6.260

5.749

8.9%

12.653

11.737

7.8%

Load factor

82.8%

80.8%

2.0 pts

82.9%

81.5%

1.4 pts

Segment guests

5,908,876

5,301,338

11.5%

11,596,535

10,626,444

9.1%

Yield (revenue per revenue passenger mile) (cents)

16.85

16.51

2.1%

17.14

16.88

1.5%

RASM (revenue per available seat mile) (cents)

13.95

13.34

4.6%

14.21

13.75

3.3%

CASM (cost per available seat mile) (cents)

12.91

12.48

3.4%

13.18

12.46

5.8%

Fuel costs per litre (cents)

62

53

17.0%

63

50

26.0%

CASM, excluding fuel and employee profit share (cents)*

9.84

9.93

(0.9%)

10.06

9.89

1.7%

Normal course issuer bid
Today, WestJet also announced that the Toronto Stock Exchange has accepted the airline’s notice to make a normal course issuer bid for five per cent of the currently issued and outstanding shares.
Dividend declaration
On July 31, 2017, WestJet’s Board of Directors declared a cash dividend of $0.14 per common voting share and variable voting share for the third quarter of 2017, to be paid on September 29, 2017, to shareholders of record on September 13, 2017. All dividends paid by WestJet are, pursuant to subsection 89(14) of the Income Tax Act, designated as eligible dividends, unless indicated otherwise. An eligible dividend paid to a Canadian resident is entitled to the enhanced dividend tax credit.