Prosperous Airlines Boosting Aircastle Profits

The key to Aircastle’s record profits last year was keeping its planes in the air, said Ron Wainshal, CEO of Aircastle.
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The key to Aircastle’s (AYR) record profits last year was keeping its planes in the air, said Ron Wainshal, CEO of Aircastle (AYR). 'We kept our planes flying,' said Wainshal. 'We had utilization of almost 100% for the whole year.' Last week the airplane lessor reported adjusted net income of $54.3 million, or $0.67 cents share for the fourth quarter, topping Wall Street’s consensus estimate of $0.44 cents a share. The aircraft leasing company posted revenue of $208.3 million in the period, also beating Street forecasts of $188.3 million. Aircastle also reported record cash flow from operations in its fourth quarter of $526.3 million in 2015, up 14.7%, as well as record gains from sales of flight equipment of $58 million in 2015. The company also completed $1.4 billion in acquisitions last year and entered into an agreement with Embraer to purchase 25 new technology E-Jet E2 aircraft. On the flip side, it sold 31 aircraft for $563 million. 'We own about 160 aircraft today and we probably will be a little bigger this year but it could be a whole lot,' said Wainshal.