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TheStreet Open House

Copa Holdings' CEO Discusses Q3 2011 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

Pedro Heilbron

Thank you, Joe, and good morning, everyone. I'm glad you could join us this morning for our third quarter earnings call. As always, my gratitude and recognition goes out to our co-workers for delivering another solid quarter, in which strong underlying demand together with a considerable capacity expansion led to outstanding revenue and earnings growth.

Among the main highlights for the quarter, demand continued on a very positive trend with passenger traffic increasing 22% for the quarter. Our consolidated load factor came in at a very 77.1% even more so when you take into account our year-over-year capacity growth which was mere 20%.

Operating revenues grew more than 30% driven by higher year-over-year load factors and yields in both our international and domestic markets. Our strong revenue performance along with slight year-over-year reduction in ex-fuel CASM allowed us to deliver outstanding third quarter revenues and earnings, as well as one of the best operating margins in the industry.

On the operational front, we went through a full quarter operating under a new fixed bank hub structure and the results have been quite positive, both from an operational as well as from a product standpoint. The implementation of our 6-bank hub is allowing us not only to better utilize the Tocumen Airport infrastructure, personnel and equipment but it’s also allowing us to provide our passengers with more and better flight options through the addition of more destinations and frequencies as well as permitting significant schedule improvements throughout our network.

We also marked the first full quarter since the launch of four new destinations last June 15. I am pleased to say that so far the performance of these new destinations, Toronto, Porto Alegre and Brasilia and Nassau have met or exceeded our original expectations.

Next month we will continue to strengthen our Hub of the Americas, the leading hub for intra-Latin American travel by adding service to five new city. Chicago, the third largest city in the US, Monterrey, Mexico, an important business and industrial center, which hosts a large number of Mexican and multinational company that do business in our region. Asuncion, the largest city and capital of Paraguay, Montego Bay, Jamaica our 12 th destination in the Caribbean, and Cucuta, an important commercial center with limited access to the region and our ninth city in Colombia.

So, by year's end, our network will serve 59 cities in 28 countries in the Americas, by far the most complete and convenient network for intra-Latin American travel.

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