Jet Blue 2009 10k Annual Report

Topics: Airline, Southwest Airlines, Low-cost carrier Pages: 206 (64089 words) Published: October 2, 2011

Dear Fellow Shareholders, Despite a very challenging environment, 2009 was a successful year for JetBlue as we reported four consecutive quarters of profitability – one of only a few U.S. airlines to do so. We generated net income of $58 million and an operating margin of 8.5% – an improvement of more than $140 million compared to 2008. We ended the year with over $1 billion in cash and short term investments – one of the strongest liquidity positions in the U.S. airline industry relative to our revenues. Additionally, JetBlue generated positive free cash flow for the first time in our history. These results demonstrate the benefits of our disciplined growth strategy, driving our highest net income since 2003. We remain committed to striving to build long term shareholder value through sustainable growth and positive free cash flow. This commitment drives our focus on managing capital expenditures, rationalizing capacity, maximizing revenue and controlling costs while preserving and expanding our unique brand and culture. The JetBlue Brand and Culture We celebrated the 10th anniversary of our first flight on February 11, 2010 – a significant accomplishment given that few airlines since airline deregulation in 1978 have been able to reach their ten year mark as healthy, stand-alone enterprises. We continue to be recognized for exceptional customer service. For the fifth year in a row, JetBlue achieved the number one customer service ranking among low cost carriers by J.D. Power and Associates. This coveted award, along with many others received in 2009, serves as a testament to our 12,000 crewmembers and the strength of our brand. During 2009, we continued to enhance our customers’ travel experience. We refreshed our food and beverage selections onboard our aircraft, offering more complimentary snack options. We also began offering free firstrun movies in-flight to customers traveling outside of the continental U.S. We believe our cabin experience, which includes more legroom than any other domestic airline’s coach product and free DIRECTV and Sirius XM Radio installed by our LiveTV subsidiary, to be the best in the industry. JetBlue’s customers and crewmembers enjoyed the first full year in our new Terminal 5 facility at JFK Airport, our home base of operations. Terminal 5 provides a world-class airport experience that matches our award-winning experience in the air. We are the largest domestic carrier at JFK, which coupled with our service to LaGuardia, Newark, Stewart/Newburgh and White Plains, bolsters our position as New York’s true hometown airline. New York is an important part of our heritage and culture, and we look forward to further solidifying our commitment to New York by combining our corporate offices into one main support center in Long Island City, Queens. Disciplined Growth In the short span of ten years, JetBlue has grown to serve 23 million customers annually, operate 151 aircraft, serve 60 cities and achieved annual revenues of $3.3 billion in 2009. As we enter our second decade, we firmly believe JetBlue has an impressive array of growth opportunities. In contrast to our prior growth, we believe our future growth should be funded primarily through cash internally generated from operations. Hence, we have focused on free cash flow, which captures our ability to generate cash from operations and

manage capital expenditures. We are committed to sustainable growth, which is based on earnings and asset efficiency. As part of this focus, we have carefully managed our fleet and significantly reduced our aircraft capital expenditures from previous years. During 2009, we took delivery of nine net aircraft and modified our aircraft order book by deferring delivery of both Airbus and Embraer aircraft. Slower and more sustainable growth has afforded us the opportunity to rationalize capacity and strengthen our core network. During 2009, we continued to build on our success in the Caribbean and Latin...
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