HomeBusinessDelta Air Lines revenue: record revenue due to 'huge demand', says CEO

Delta Air Lines revenue: record revenue due to ‘huge demand’, says CEO

Delta Air Lines reported record sales in the third quarter, and CEO Ed Bastian attributed the “massive demand” to business performance to a shift in consumer dollars from goods to services.

“Consumers are prioritizing investments in themselves, experiences and services, rather than buying things,” Bastian told Yahoo Finance.

Comparison of the Q3 report with consensus estimates compiled by Bloomberg:

  • Adjusted Net Income: $966 billion (including a $35 million impact from Hurricane Ian) versus $994 million expected

  • Adjusted earnings per share: $1.51 (including a 3 cent impact from Hurricane Ian) vs $1.54 expected

  • Revenue: $12.84 Billion vs $12.83 Billion Expected

The outlook for the company also points to a healthy holiday season.

“The demand in the fourth quarter looks strong,” added Bastian. “The booking traction we’re seeing matches the momentum we’ve built over the past three or four months.”

Enthusiasm for leisure travel and the re-emergence of business travel have helped to boost revenue, driving fuel costs up 45% compared to 2019 and other costs the airline is allocating capital to achieve pre-pandemic capacity.

The company is currently the industry’s least-recovered airline compared to 2019 operating stats, and is continuing to renew its fleet at home and abroad. In the third quarter, Delta entered into a purchase agreement with Boeing to add one hundred 737-10 aircraft to its fleet, with delivery in 2025.

A Delta Air Lines Airbus A350-900 aircraft takes off from Sydney Airport in Sydney, Australia, on October 28, 2020. REUTERS/Loren Elliott

Delta Air Lines expects to operate at 92% of its 2019 comparable capacity in the December quarter. Other than that milestone, the company’s leadership has set its sights on fully restoring its network in the next six to nine months, which would be good news for airfares.

“I’m confident we can be there next summer,” said Bastian. “If we bring that extra capacity back, that’s probably going to help a little bit to get rid of the pricing pressure for consumers, but more importantly for Delta, it’s going to help us get a much better cost productivity, and we’ll be able to to pass on some of those cost savings to our customers.”

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