SkyWest Airlines reported financial and operating results for Q2 2020, including net loss of $26 million, or $0.51 per share, compared to net income of $88 million, or $1.71 per diluted share, for Q2 2019. The primary factor in SkyWest’s lower results in Q2 2020 compared to Q2 2019 was reduced flight schedules and lower demand resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Commenting on the results, Chip Childs, Chief Executive Officer of SkyWest Airlines, said, “COVID-19 continues to cause unprecedented disruption across the airline industry. The safety and well- being of our people and passengers remains our main focus. Maintaining strong liquidity and working collaboratively with our partners are our other priorities. I want to thank our 14,000 employees for their dedication to our passengers, each other and our mission during this pandemic.”
Skywest Airlines Financial Results
Revenue was $350 million in Q2 2020, down from $744 million in Q2 2019, due to the COVID-19 pandemic that caused a significant reduction in the number of scheduled flights SkyWest operated under its flying contracts compared to the same period last year. SkyWest deferred recognizing revenue on $69 million of fixed monthly payments received during Q2 2020. Under GAAP, the fixed monthly payments are recognized as revenue ratably based on completed flights over the contract term. Due to the significantly lower than normal number of flights completed during Q2 2020, the amount of cash received exceeded the revenue recognized based on the number of flights completed during the quarter. SkyWest will recognize the deferred revenue based on completed flights over the remaining contract term.
SkyWest Airlines additionally experienced reduced passenger demand on flights operated under its prorate agreements compared to the same period last year, also driven by the COVID-19 pandemic. Total block hours, including flights operated under SkyWest’s contract and prorate agreements, were down 66% in Q2 2020 from Q2 2019.
Operating expenses were $354 million in Q2 2020, down from $600 million in Q2 2019 due to fewer flights operated compared to the same period last year, and $152 million in CARES Act payroll support (described under “Capital and Liquidity” below) recognized as an offset to salaries and wages expense in Q2 2020.
Operational Update on Previously Announced Deals
SkyWes Airlines is coordinating with its major airline partners to optimize the timing of upcoming fleet deliveries under previously announced deals in response to COVID-19 schedule reductions. The anticipated future delivery dates summarized below are based on currently available information and are subject to change.
Flying contract with United Airlines (“United”)
Twenty-five used E175 aircraft financed by United and operated by SkyWest:
- 21 used E175s were delivered during Q2 2020
- All 25 used aircraft have been delivered under this agreement as of June 30, 2020
Flying contract with Delta Air Lines (“Delta”)
Six new E175 aircraft to be financed and operated by SkyWest:
- Two new E175 aircraft were delivered during Q2 2020
- Four new E175 aircraft are scheduled for delivery by the end of 2020
- Normal cash down-payments are already covered by deposits paid last year
Six used E175s and one new CRJ900 aircraft financed by Delta and operated by SkyWest:
- Three used E175 aircraft were delivered during Q2 2020
- All six used E175 aircraft have been delivered under this agreement as of June 30, 2020
- One new CRJ900 aircraft is scheduled for delivery by the end of 2020
SkyWest Airlines still anticipates removing four CRJ900 aircraft and one CRJ700 aircraft from its flying agreement with Delta by the end of 2020.
Flying contract with American Airlines (“American”)
Twenty new E175 aircraft to be financed and operated by SkyWest:
- Aircraft deliveries are anticipated from Q4 2021 through mid-2022
- SkyWest anticipates financing the aircraft through debt
Fleet changes under the American flying agreements
SkyWest has a flying contract with American to operate a total of 70 CRJ700 aircraft, of which 61 aircraft were in-service at June 30, 2020. SkyWest anticipates placing the remaining nine aircraft in-service from late 2020 through the first half of 2021. SkyWest and American also terminated the prorate flying agreement for seven CRJ200 aircraft during Q2 2020.
Delta flying contract for CRJ200 aircraft
As previously announced, SkyWest’s capacity purchase agreement with Delta for CRJ200 aircraft is scheduled to expire in 2020. SkyWest Airlines removed 19 Delta leased CRJ200 aircraft from the contract during Q2 2020. SkyWest owns the remaining 36 CRJ200 aircraft under contract and has no outstanding financing obligations on these aircraft. SkyWest anticipates removing the remaining 36 CRJ200s from the contract by the end of 2020.
Lease agreement with a third party for CRJ700 aircraft
As of June 30, 2020, SkyWest had 13 CRJ700 aircraft under a previously-announced lease agreement with a third party under a ten-year lease term. Due to the demand disruption from COVID-19, the parties have suspended placement of additional CRJ700 aircraft under this lease agreement.
About SkyWest Airlines
SkyWest, Inc. is the holding company for SkyWest Airlines and SkyWest Leasing, an aircraft leasing company. SkyWest Airlines has a fleet of nearly 500 aircraft connecting passengers to over 250 destinations throughout North America. SkyWest Airlines operates through partnerships with United Airlines, Delta Air Lines, American Airlines and Alaska Airlines carrying more than 43 million passengers in 2019.