Saia rebounds from 2009 4Q loss

user-gravatar Headshot
Updated Feb 1, 2011

Saia Inc. on Monday, Jan. 31, reported fourth-quarter revenue was $224 million, up 11 percent from the prior -year quarter, reflecting enhanced yield and increased tonnage. Operating income was $1.8 million compared to an operating loss of $3.6 million from continuing operations. Net income was $700,000 compared to a loss of $3.1 million. Fourth-quarter 2009 results included $3.9 million in reduced expenses due to a change in vacation policy.

Fourth-quarter 2010 highlights include:
• Less-than-truckload tonnage per workday increased 6.1 percent;
• LTL yield increased 5.4 percent due to pricing actions and increased fuel surcharge; and
• Operating ratio was 99.2 vs. 101.8, which included the impact of the favorable vacation adjustment equating to 1.9 operating points.

“Our continued focus on measured pricing actions contributed to meaningful improvement in operating results and cash flow compared to the difficult environment of 2009,” said Rick O’Dell, president and chief executive officer of Johns Creek, Ga.-based Saia. “The combination of tonnage growth, increasing yield and Saia’s continued aggressive cost performance resulted in a significant improvement in our fourth-quarter operating ratio. While margins remain short of historical levels and targeted returns, I am directionally pleased with the progress and encouraged by identified opportunities and industry fundamentals as we move into 2011.”

Revenue for the full year 2010 was $903 million, an increase of 6 percent from 2009. Operating income was $12.1 million compared with an operating loss of $3.7 million from continuing operations in 2009. Net income was $2.0 million compared to a loss of $9.0 million from continuing operations.

2010 highlights are summarized as follows:
• LTL tonnage per workday increased 2.9 percent over 2009;
• LTL yield increased 2.9 percent primarily due to the impact of higher fuel surcharge; and
• Operating ratio from continuing operations was 98.7 vs. 100.4.

“During 2010, we continued to focus on our core strategy of building density, customer satisfaction and cost reduction supported by engineered process improvements,” O’Dell said. “I am pleased that improving market fundamentals and customer recognition of our quality service has permitted us to achieve meaningful pricing improvement, particularly in the second half of 2010. I believe we are in the early stages of this yield recovery and expect continued near-term progress. We feel that Saia’s broad coverage, strong service offering, effective marketing, focused pricing discipline and consistent cost execution provide a solid foundation for long-term profitable growth and increased shareholder and customer value as industry dynamics improve.”