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Pinnacle Airlines Corp. Q1 2010 Earnings Call Transcript

Pinnacle Airlines Corp. Q1 2010 Earnings Call Transcript

Pinnacle Airlines Corp. (PNCL)

Q1 2010 Earnings Call

May 4, 2010 3:00 pm ET


Philip Trenary - President and CEO

Peter Hunt - VP and CFO

Brian Hunt - VP and General Counsel


Duane Pfennigwerth - Raymond James



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Good day ladies and gentlemen and welcome to the First Quarter 2010 Pinnacle Airlines Corporation Earnings Call. My name is Regina and I will be your operator today. (Operator Instructions).

I would now like to turn the conference over to your host for today, Brian Hunt, Vice President and Chief Legal Counsel, of Pinnacle Airlines Corporation. Mr. Hunt, you may proceed.

Brian Hunt

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Thank you. Good afternoon everyone and welcome to the first quarter 2010 earnings conference call of Pinnacle Airlines Corp. On behalf of the employees of Pinnacle Airlines I would like to thank you for your interest in our company. This call is being presented live over the Internet via webcast from our website, It will also be available on our site for 30 days after this call.

This presentation contains various forward-looking statements that are based on management’s beliefs as well as assumptions made by and information currently available to management. Although the company believes that the expectations reflected in such statements are reasonable, it can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to have been correct.

Such statements are subject to certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions including those set forth in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which are available to our investors at our website or online from the Commission.

Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove erroneous, actual results may vary materially from the results that were anticipated or projected. The company does not intend to update these forward-looking statements before its next required filing with the SEC.

Now I will turn it over to Phil Trenary, President and Chief Executive Officer.

Phil Trenary

Thank you, Brian, and that sounds a whole lot better comment from a professional. Appreciate that, and welcome to our first quarter of 2010 earnings call of Pinnacle Airlines Corp.

We did have a disappointing first quarter in terms of earnings. It turned out as we suggested in our last call, the weather had a dramatic impact on our operations. In 30 years of doing this it was absolutely the worst winter weather pattern ever experienced.

You expect Minneapolis and Detroit and some of the markets in the Northeast to have issues. In fact, we had many full days for operation and New York was completely shutdown. It's highly unusual path Houston and Atlanta shutdown from snow, so it did have dramatic impact on us.

One of the things is real positive coming out of this is recovery of our people. They did an outstanding job of managing through this. As soon as weather permitted, they did get right back into the air.

It did have more of a disproportionate impact on Colgan, a couple of reasons, there was more complete shutdowns in the Northeast relative to the south and also Colgan’s pro-rate operations, when they don’t fly there is no revenue versus all the contracts that do have fixed cost covered under the contract.

The other big news that we just heard this week and I am sure everyone understand and paying attention as the announced merger between Continental and United Airlines and we are very proud to have both this parties as strong partners and from an industry outlook and our perspective on consolidation this is a good thing. We believe that it's in the best long-term interest for our industry. Continental and United will be a great partnership and make a stronger carrier.

If we had to choose between diversity with more airlines and having fewer partners but very strong partners and we’d obviously like to see the fewer very strong partners and we believe this is a step in the right direction not only for Pinnacle but for the industry overall.

Then speaking on strong airlines we continue to talk to Delta and that’s very positive and we continue to have a good relationship with them and we are looking forward to having those resolved at some point in next quarter or too. Delta does continue to take advantage of our capabilities especially with the CRJ-900. We continue to operate our long range overall operations. To my knowledge we are still going to be carrier that can provide those sort of services to Delta or any other carrier.

Colgan will be spending the balance of the second quarter and third quarter in preparing for their growth coming with 15 deliveries of the new Q400 next generation aircraft. Well actually the delivery will be in August but in a service with Continental starting September 2010 with the final aircraft coming in May 2010.

This is something we talked about whether to bring it up, well in the question side is to go ahead and talk about it upfront. We do continue talk with our pilots about getting a new agreement with them, a new tentative agreement. Our people are at the table today. The relationship continues to be positive and we are both committed to try to get this wrapped up as soon as we can.

So in general, it was disappointing quarter financially, but we have to give a lot of credit to our people flying, a great airline recovering nicely and continue to do a good job. I think you will see the results of their efforts in our second quarter results.

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