JetBlue CEO: Airline 'Well-Positioned' for 2010 Growth
Despite posting profits each quarter of 2009, JetBlue Airways has seen its shares struggle to take off, losing 21 percent of their volume over the last year. CEO Dave Barger, however, tells CNBC he remains confident and feels the Company is well-positioned going into its second decade of operations.
"We just closed out a very strong year in 2009. It was our first year with positive free cash flow. Balancing this with shareholders, consumers and customers, I think we're very well-positioned," Barger said.
The New York-based airline turned in an 8.5 percent operating margin for the past year.
The company plans to take in four more planes than previously expected this year and will defer purchases on 16 others until 2018. Such flexibility will help JetBlue take advantage of varying economic conditions, the CEO said.
"We're so well-positioned with our order book, the flexibility of our fleet. We're poised and ready to grow when the opportunity is there," said Barger.
JetBlue on Thursday reported earnings of 4 cents a share on sales of $832 million, edging analyst estimates of 3 cents a share and $826 million.
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