Spirit AeroSystems Holdings' CEO Hosts Analyst Meeting (Transcript)

Spirit AeroSystems Holdings, Inc. ( SPR)

Analyst Meeting Call

March 7, 2012 09:00 ET


Coleen Tabor – Director, Investor Relations

Jeff Turner – President and Chief Executive Officer

Phil Anderson – Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

David Coleal – Senior Vice President and General Manager, Fuselage Segment

John Pilla – Senior Vice President and General Manager, Propulsion Segment

Alex Kummant – Senior Vice President and General Manager, Oklahoma Operations

Terry George – Vice President, Spirit 787 Program

Sam Marnick – Senior Vice President, Corporate Administration and Human Resources


Julie Yates – Credit Suisse

Doug Harned – Sanford Bernstein

Cai Von Rumohr – Cowen & Company

Howard Rubel – Jefferies

Sam Pearlstein – Wells Fargo

Carter Leake – BB&T

Carter Copeland – Barclays

Peter Arment – Sterne Agee

Jason Gursky – Citigroup

David Strauss – UBS

George Shapiro – Access 342

Kevin Ciabattoni – KeyBanc

Myles Walton – Deutsche Bank

Howard Rubel – Jefferies

Ken Herbert – Wedbush

Joe Nadol – JPMorgan


Coleen Tabor – Director, Investor Relations

Good morning to everyone in Wichita and those of us joining on the phone. We appreciate you joining us today. And I'd like to welcome you to Spirit's 2012 Investor Conference. I am Coleen Tabor, Director of Investor Relations for Spirit AeroSystems and it's my pleasure to welcome you to Wichita and Spirit AeroSystems' Fourth Investor Meeting as a public company. I would also like to welcome those participating in today's webcast.

Over the next few hours, we intend to provide you with our perspective on where our business is today in terms of the core business, new business, the opportunities we have in front of us, and our focused areas. Before we get started, I'd like to cover a housekeeping item that will make the day go more smoothly. For those attending in the room, there are microphones in front of you. (Operator Instructions)

Now, let's take a look at today's agenda. I think you go to the next slide please. Thank you. In just a few minutes, our President and CEO, Jeff Turner will review the company's strategy and business update. Jeff will be happy to take your questions after his remarks. After Jeff, we will hear from Phil Anderson, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer regarding our financial performance and outlook. Then our segment and operating leaders will review the segments along with the special focus topic beginning with David Coleal, our Senior Vice President and General Manager of our Fuselage Segment. He will speak to you about the Fuselage Segment and operational efficiency across Spirit.

Following a short break, John Pilla, Senior Vice President and General Manager of our Propulsion Segment will speak to you about the Propulsion Segment and value engineering across Spirit. Following John, Alex Kummant, Senior Vice President and General Manager of our Oklahoma Operations will speak to you about the Wing Segment and new program execution. Then Terry George, Vice President of Spirit 787 Program will give us an update on the program followed by Sam Marnick, our Senior Vice President of Corporate Administration and Human Resources. He will share more about aligning the entire team for success. I think we have a great lineup today that will give you a real sense of how Spirit is moving forward.

Of course, before we begin, we need to take a look at the next slide. I need to remind you that any projections or goals we may include in our discussion today are likely to involve risks, which are detailed in our news release, in our SEC filings, and in the forward-looking statements at the beginning of this web presentation.

Now, let's get started. Many of you have come to know Jeff Turner over the past several years. Jeff has 30 years of experience in the aerospace industry. He was named President and CEO of Spirit AeroSystems in June 2005 upon the purchase of the Boeing Commercial Airplanes' Wichita Division by Onex. Prior to becoming CEO, Jeff served as the Wichita Division's General Manager for 10 years.

Now, it's my pleasure to introduce our President and Chief Executive Officer, Jeff Turner.

Jeff Turner – President and Chief Executive Officer

Thank you, Coleen and good morning everyone. I appreciate you being here and those are joining us on the phone, thank you. You are going to miss a nice breezy day in Kansas. It’s good to be in towards the day, because the wind is still howling outside. Again, welcome, thank you for coming and spending time with us in Investor Day. I know there were several of you who didn't get in, in time for the tours yesterday, and I think we have got some tours planned later in the day for those of you who missed yesterday or we are so excited about what you saw that you want to go see it again.

I am pleased that you are here with us. I trust those of you who got to see the tours yesterday that you enjoyed them. I always am amazed when we go out and walk through what a team of people can do when they work hard together. You saw and shared some great things on the 787, fast-paced 737 line, and the Sikorsky Fuselage is coming together very, very well.

I would like to begin today by introducing to you my team. Many of whom will be following up my comments to share their perspectives on specific focus areas. Since many of you have joined us before, I think you'll recognize about half of the faces on this chart, which demonstrates our retention of the industry knowledge, the relationships, and the expertise upon which Spirit is built. You'll also notice several new faces. This team is part of a very conscious specific area of emphasis for us and it's the next generation of leaders at Spirit. This group brings diverse experiences and leadership responsibilities in the aircraft industry and other manufacturing and transportation industries. The gold frames there will be the formal speakers this morning, but we have asked all of them to be here for those who are in attendance for you to meet.

Our transformation story includes transitioning from a division of Boeing, where we controlled some of our costs, where we had one internal customer and we had a cost center, cost management approach transitioning to an independent company responsible for and controlling all of our costs competing globally having multiple customers, and of course, being profit motivated to be a low cost, high quality leader in our industry. As you can imagine, there have been many, many successes, many lessons learned in this transition and it's brought us to the day where we are intently focused on execution, on continued to executing in a growing environment and diversification.

Strategically, we conservatively structured our company, believing we needed to be conservative to manage through the (indiscernible) of the business cycle in our industry. We have seen production increases with 2012 production rates continuing to rise and with a strong large commercial aircraft outlook ahead. We have captured new business with new customers, additional business with existing customers. We have invested heavily in the 787, the A350, and some business jet products. We continue to improve our low cost structure, which is one of the areas my team will focus on later in the presentations as they share with you our focus on operational efficiency, on value engineering, and on new program management.

Following our basic strategy, we've seen growth primarily organically, but also through focused M&A. Our core business continues to perform well. We were $4.9 billion revenue company in 2011 with strong underlying cash generation from our core programs. Our current revenue guidance for 2012 is approximately $5.2 billion to $5.4 billion. We are the designer and manufacturer of a range of aircraft structural products pictured here, Fuselages, Wings and Propulsion support hardware. Those of you who are here yesterday saw our strength in both metallic and composite structure large capability in both. You saw our large scale automation in our processes, and today, you will hear more about how we were closely with our customers to ensure that we meet their requirements.

Spirit has expanded globally with strategic partnerships around the world. In addition to our Wichita and Tulsa McAlester sites, we have our Spirit Europe site and Prestwick Scotland. Spirit Malaysia opened in 2009 and supports primarily composite wing assemblies. Our joint venture in Moscow has provided us and continues to provide us with engineering design resources. Our joint venture in Jinjiang, China supports maintenance repair and overhaul work for Asia, primarily in our net sale products. Our Kinston North Carolina and Saint Nazaire sites support the Airbus A350 XWB. In total, we have more than 15,000 Spirit employees with facilities of over 15 million square feet. We are well-postured to support the anticipated global growth in these large scale commercial production requirements.

In addition to these global resources, we have a worldwide supply base that does hardware production as well as design. This network and suppliers around the world and our ability to bring these resources together demonstrates our expertise in global supply chain management and positions us to serve our customers anywhere in the world with high-quality production and service at a reasonable value at bringing cost. We all know that the requirements for our business starts with revenue passenger miles. We continue to see growth with the forecast estimating a doubling of air traffic in the next 15 years driving a doubling of aircraft fleet requirements to support global customer demand. This is fuel for the replacement and growth demand that we see in the emerging markets. Though I must say categorically, I don’t believe it will be near the smooth, I do believe the underlying demand continues to be there for our products.

As demand for growth and replacement airplanes generates about 33,500 deliveries between 2010 and 2030, Spirit sees 20% or higher growth across nearly all of our core and new programs. Core products are an integral part of our content. Core platforms remain the backbone of Spirit by continuing to generate solid revenue earnings and cash for our company. From a Boeing product perspective, no Boeing airplane flies without Spirit hardware. Spirit has the highest level of delegated engineering authority of any Boeing structured partner, and we have life of program plus derivative contracts on these programs. With our acquisition of BAE Aerostructures business in 2006, we added Airbus as a significant customer. This accelerated our relationship with Airbus and the A320 program Airbus's most successful one. On it, we have a major content and we see continued strength in that program well into the next decade. And on the A380, we are currently producing at a steady rate.

The best programs to be on in the industry are the ones that Spirit has significant content share. New programs in general and this one in particular have been challenging, but we know that the 787 is going to be a great program. These are some pictures of Spirit’s capability that many of you got to see first hand yesterday. Complex design and manufacturing is our forte and to that we have added systems installation from half-inch carbon fiber ribbon to a final cockpit to a final flight capable cockpit. This embodies the values and the value that we bring to our customers and demonstrates it's not all just about cost, but also about quality and service. We are very pleased that the airplane is certified and in service. We are working closely with our customer on the design of the 787-9 derivative.

We are working with our suppliers to ensure production ramp up readiness and with cost reduction as a top priority on this program, we are intensely focused on productivity and efficiency and improvements. Terry George will tell you more about these efforts in his program update later this morning. We have grown our business with Airbus as a significant partner on the A350 XWB. We designed and build the A350 Section 15 and the wing front spar in a new state-of-the-art composites facility. We fabricated the center fuselage sections for test and now initial production have been completed in North Carolina and shipped across the Atlantic to our Saint Nazaire facility, where there were assembled and then shipped across the runway to our customer earlier this year.

Total program investment on this program is shared between Spirit suppliers and partners and Airbus. Early stages of production hardware is where we find ourselves now and we feel good about our progress to-date and our growing relationship with Airbus. Alex Kummant will share more about how we are managing this and other new programs with the lessons learned and getting good results. We've diversified in the business and regional jets with some of the best companies in the industry. Gulfstream programs continue their progress as we build the initial production wings with the G280 and the G650. Mitsubishi Regional Jet and Bombardier CSeries programs on which we do the engine pylons are progressing well through the development stages.

We have also moved into pure military platforms as well as military derivatives of commercial airplanes. The CH-53K is our first pure military product that we captured. We continue to work closely with Sikorsky to ensure that we meet their schedule and technical needs and are prepared for future buys. The P-8A is the first military derivative product that we've manufactured on the commercial production line. These diversification platforms with market leading partners we believe gives us competitive advantage.

Despite the overall global economic conditions over the last several years, our backlog held at near record levels and is growing again in 2012. This chart reflects through the end of December. In 2011, the large commercial backlog remained strong as annual orders exceeded deliveries. (Callus) continued to be the strong demand for single-aisle products. We are seeing a growing demand for wide-body products as well.

This chart shows the strength and the diversity of our backlog, which remains at almost $32 billion. This is a long-cycle business. Programs that we are winning today will be in production over the next several decades. 78% of our backlog is either not yet in full production or has been in production less than 15 years. Many of the new programs have jointly funded development costs between Spirit, our partners, and our customers. For us, it continues to be about bringing our capability and expertise to our customers' product families and them having a reliable partner and supplier long-term.

Read the rest of this transcript for free on seekingalpha.com