Atlas Air Worldwide set for strong H1 performance in 2021

By Rachelle Harry

Atlas Air Boeing 747-400F

Freighter operator Atlas Air Worldwide has achieved increased net income and ebitda (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortisation) in the first quarter of this year and it expects continued strong performance.

In its first quarter 2021 results, the freighter operator recorded a 33.8% year-on-year increase in revenues to $861.3m. Net income increased 285.1% to $89.9m.

Adjusted ebitda for the first quarter was $181.3m – 49.6% higher than what was achieved in the same period of 2020.

Volumes in the first quarter amounted to 88,523 block hours, compared with 73,247 in first quarter 2020 — a 20.9% year-on-year increase.

Atlas Air Worldwide president and chief executive John Dietrich, commented: “Our performance was driven by the strength and flexibility of our global business model and our team continuing to capitalise on the current airfreight environment, with demand and yields that are well above typical seasonal levels.

“Our results also benefited from flying four B747 freighters and one B777 freighter that we reintroduced to our fleet throughout 2020 to serve customer demand.”

The freighter operator noted: “As the ACMI and Charter services have become more similar, we view and manage them as one segment. We now have two operating and reportable segments: Airline Operations and Dry Leasing.

“Previously, our operating and reportable segments were ACMI, Charter and Dry Leasing. Our Airline Operations segment provides outsourced aircraft operating services to customers on an ACMI, CMI and Charter basis. No changes have been made to our Dry Leasing segment.”

Looking at the Atlas Air Worldwide’s divisional results from January to March this year, the Airline Operations division achieved increased year-on-year revenues of 36.3% to $826.2m.

The Airline Operations division’s direct contribution increased by 64.0% year on year to $169.2m.

The carrier’s Dry Leasing division saw revenues decrease by 3.7% year on year to $40.4m.

The Dry Leasing division also reported a 1.3% year-on-year decline in direct contributions to $10.6m.

Looking forward, Dietrich added: “We are off to a very good start in 2021 and are seeing continued business momentum in the second quarter. We are closely monitoring the market and leveraging the diversity of our business model. This includes being prepared to capitalise on global market conditions as well as being able to successfully adjust to any changes.

“With the strong global demand for airfreight outpacing air cargo supply, we anticipate airfreight demand and yields to remain strong, with capacity on long-haul trade lanes remaining tight. 

“In the second quarter of 2021, we expect to fly approximately 90,000 block hours, with revenue of approximately $950m, and adjusted ebitda of about $210m. In addition, we anticipate adjusted net income to grow approximately 30% compared with adjusted net income of $72.2m in the first quarter of 2021.

“Given ongoing economic and market-related uncertainties, including Covid-19, new variants of the virus, surges in cases globally, travel restrictions, low international passenger travel and other factors, we are providing a second-quarter outlook, but not issuing a full-year 2021 earnings outlook at this time.”

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