Air Transport World

U.S. Nationals

AirTran Airlines: The financial situation at the former ValuJet, which was merged with sister carrier AirTran Airways last November, deteriorated sharply in 1997. Revenues fell 9.8% to $198.1 million while expenses were climbing 13.2% and the result was an operating loss of $92.9 million, up from $37.5 million in 1996, and a net loss of $86.8 million, up from $41.5 million.

Despite the results, AirTran Holdings CEO Joseph Corr declared earlier this year that the company will be "solidly profitable" in 1998. The holding company posted a net loss of $96.7 million on revenues of $211.5 million for 1997, but ended the year with a cash balance of $92 million.

As with revenues, traffic was down at AirTran Airlines last year. Passenger boardings declined 6.1% to 2,821,000 and RPKs dipped 0.03% to 2.4 billion.

Air Transport International: Traffic turned down at the little Rock-based charter carrier last year. Boardings dropped 24.2% to 22,000, RPKs were off 11.9% to 90.7 million and FTKs fell 16% to 526.6 million. ATI had not filed its financial results with DOT at this writing.

BAX Global, the operating Unit of Pittston Burlington, has agreed to acquire ATI in lieu of creating its own airline.

Air Wisconsin: The United Express carrier is expanding its reach this year as it takes over many of the Denver routes formerly operated by Mesa Airlines, which lost its United Express contract. Air Wisconsin has purchased former Western Pacific feeder Mountain Air Express to provide turboprop capacity for the Denver services.

Profits were off slightly in 1997, although Air Wisconsin's revenues climbed 6.4% to $140.9 million. A 6.7% increase in operating expense cut operating profit to $3.6 million from $3.8 million in 1996, and net to $3.7 million from $3.8 million.

Passenger boardings for the year were up 10.6% to 1,943,000 and RPKs rose 16% to 978.6 million.

Aloha: The Hawaiian carrier's profits were off slightly in 1997, despite a 0.2% rise in revenues to $233 million. Operating profit dipped to $5.8 million from $6.2 million and net to just under $4.3 million from just over $4.3 million.

Passenger boardings for the year were up 2.6% to 5,202,000, RPKs advanced 3.9% to 1.17 billion and load factor improved 0.7 points to 65%.

American International: The Detroit-based cargo carrier was acquired by Kitty Hawk last November, from the Kalitta Cos. Kitty Hawk also purchased 16 727s as part of the transaction.

American International enjoyed good traffic growth in 1997, as FTKs climbed 18.4% to 1.4 billion.

The financial picture, however, was gloomy. A 5% drop in revenues to $426.5 million coupled with a 2.4% increase in expenses produced an operating loss of $23 million and a net loss of $45.7 million.

In 1996, the carrier bail an operating profit of $9.7 million and a net loss of $12.1 million.

American Trams Air: As it prepared to celebrate its 25th anniversary in 1998, ATA returned to profitability last year as revenues reached a record $783. …

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