Delta Air Lines highlighted the company’s financial outlook and strategic priorities to the investment community on December 15, in New York.
“2022 is proving to be a pivotal year as we rebuild the world’s best-performing airline. Thanks to the exceptional work of our people, we navigated challenges while continuing to strengthen our competitive advantages, enhancing the power of our trusted consumer brand,” Chief Executive Officer Ed Bastian said. “Demand for air travel remains robust as we exit the year and Delta’s momentum is building. Our 2023 outlook for 15 to 20% revenue growth over 2022 and margin expansion support a near doubling of EPS to US$5 to US$6 per share, keeping us on track for our 2024 earnings target of over US$7 per share.”
The update comes as Delta closes out the final weeks of 2022, a year of significant progress in the restoration of the airline’s financial foundation. Delta is delivering on key operational and commercial milestones and is ahead of its financial plan for the first year of the airline’s three-year plan, established last December. Full year 2022 GAAP EPS is expected to be US$2.12 to US$2.17. Adjusted EPS of US$3.07 to US$3.12 reflects an increased outlook for the December-quarter compared to prior guidance provided in October.
In 2023, Delta expects to deliver strong top-line growth and significant operating leverage on a full restoration of its network and continued improvements in premium and loyalty revenue. Non-fuel unit costs are expected to decline 5 to 7%, driving margin expansion and a near doubling of adjusted EPS to between US$5 and US$6. The company expects to generate more than US$2 billion of free cash flow, enabling further debt reduction. The company is reiterating 2024 targets, including earning of over US$7 per share and strengthening the balance sheet to return to investment grade metrics. (£1.00 = US$1.22 at time of publication).