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Air Canada announces the acquisition of two factory-built Boeing 777 freighters

"The past three months have been very challenging for our company, our employees, and customers from an operational perspective.  The path to recovery from any serious event is rarely straight and easy. I thank our employees for their incredibly hard work, demonstrated professionalism and commitment as we safely transported over 9.1 million customers in the quarter, nearly 8 million more than the second quarter of 2021 or about 70% of total customers carried in the full year 2021," said Michael Rousseau, President and Chief Executive Officer of Air Canada.

"From a financial perspective, we are pleased with our results as we generated $154 million of EBITDA* in the quarter, a significant increase from a negative quarterly EBITDA of $656 million a year ago, and operating revenues neared $4 billion in the quarter, an improvement of about $3.1 billion from the second quarter of 2021. Compared to pre-pandemic levels, 2022 second quarter advance ticket sales reached 94 per cent of those in the same quarter of 2019. In the second quarter, our operating capacity, measured by available seat miles, was 73 per cent of the same quarter in 2019, and despite the lower capacity, passenger revenues were 80 per cent of those generated in the second quarter of 2019, driven by higher yields," said Mr. Rousseau.

Air Canada also incurs expenses related to the operation of freighter aircraft which some airlines, without comparable cargo businesses, may not incur. Air Canada introduced one Boeing 767 dedicated freighter to its fleet in December 2021 and added a second Boeing 767 freighter in April 2022. In the second quarter of 2022, Air Canada took delivery of two new Boeing 767 freighter aircraft, which are expected to enter service in 2023. Air Canada expects to have a fleet of seven Boeing 767 dedicated freighters by the end of 2023. Prior to 2021, Air Canada did not incur any costs related to the operation of dedicated freighter aircraft. These costs do not generate ASMs and therefore excluding these costs from operating expense results provides for a more meaningful comparison across periods when such costs may vary.

Jason Berry, Vice President, Cargo, at Air Canada in a statement mentioned that “It has been another exciting quarter for Air Canada Cargo as we continue to strategically build our business and invest in our future. The ongoing growth and support from the forwarding community across our global network has been a key to fuelling our future. Our careful and targeted investments in our freighter fleet and our self-handled cargo-only ground operations in our major hubs throughout Canada and internationally together with staying laser focused on our quality of service to the vast forwarding community we serve, are key strategies as we continue to strengthen and grow as North America’s only combination carrier,” said Jason Berry, Vice President, Cargo at Air Canada.

“The second of our Boeing 767 converted freighters entered service and we took delivery of two brand new 767 freighters from the Boeing factory, and they will enter service in 2023. Today, we announced a further expansion of our fleet with the acquisition of two factory-built Boeing 777 freighters, to enter service in 2024. The news today is a testament to the amazing work of our employees and partners and I would like to thank them all for their continuing efforts to transform our business. The investment in long range widebody freighters, combined with our growing 767 freighter fleet and robust passenger network will allow us continue to bring to life the most flexible and diverse cargo operation in the Americas. On the ground, we are continuing to make considerable investments in facilities, technology and our people to prepare us for the growth that lies ahead,” Mr. Berry added.


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