Alaska Air Group (NYSE: ALK) and Era Group (NYSE:ERA) are both transportation companies, but which is the superior business? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, valuation, earnings, profitabiliy, institutional ownership, risk and dividends.

Risk & Volatility

Alaska Air Group has a beta of 0.97, indicating that its stock price is 3% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Era Group has a beta of 0.85, indicating that its stock price is 15% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Institutional and Insider Ownership

91.0% of Alaska Air Group shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 89.7% of Era Group shares are held by institutional investors. 0.6% of Alaska Air Group shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 7.5% of Era Group shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Alaska Air Group and Era Group’s top-line revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Alaska Air Group $6.33 billion 1.83 $1.75 billion $5.88 15.97
Era Group $239.17 million 0.83 $38.50 million N/A N/A

Alaska Air Group has higher revenue and earnings than Era Group.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of recent recommendations and price targets for Alaska Air Group and Era Group, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Alaska Air Group 0 2 8 0 2.80
Era Group 0 0 0 0 N/A

Alaska Air Group presently has a consensus price target of $104.11, suggesting a potential upside of 10.89%. Given Alaska Air Group’s higher possible upside, analysts plainly believe Alaska Air Group is more favorable than Era Group.

Profitability

This table compares Alaska Air Group and Era Group’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Alaska Air Group 11.51% 30.01% 9.53%
Era Group -4.09% -2.18% -1.06%

Dividends

Alaska Air Group pays an annual dividend of $1.20 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.3%. Era Group does not pay a dividend. Alaska Air Group pays out 20.4% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Alaska Air Group has raised its dividend for 3 consecutive years.

Summary

Alaska Air Group beats Era Group on 12 of the 14 factors compared between the two stocks.

Alaska Air Group Company Profile

Alaska Air Group, Inc. is the holding company of Alaska Airlines (Alaska), Virgin America Inc., Horizon Air (Horizon) and other business units. The Company operates through three segments: Mainline, Regional and Horizon. Its Mainline segment includes Alaska’s and Virgin America’s scheduled air transportation for passengers and cargo throughout the United States, and in parts of Canada, Mexico, Costa Rica and Cuba. Its Regional segment includes Horizon’s and other third-party carriers’ scheduled air transportation for passengers across a shorter distance network within the United States under capacity purchased arrangements (CPAs). Its Horizon segment includes the capacity sold to Alaska under CPA. Alaska and Virgin America operate fleets of narrowbody passenger jets. As of December 31, 2016, it maintained two frequent flyer plans: the Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan and the Virgin America Elevate.

Era Group Company Profile

Era Group Inc. is engaged in operating helicopters. The Company’s helicopters transport personnel to, from and between offshore oil and gas production platforms, drilling rigs and other installations. The Company also dry-leases helicopters to third-party helicopter operators and foreign affiliates. The primary users of the Company’s helicopter services are international, integrated and independent oil and gas exploration, development and production companies. In addition to serving the oil and gas industry, it provides air medical services; utility services, including support of firefighting, mining, power line and pipeline survey activities, and Alaska flightseeing tours, among other activities. It owns and operates a range of classes of helicopters, such as Heavy helicopters, Medium helicopters and Light helicopters. Heavy helicopters have twin engines and passenger capacity ranging from 16 to 19. Medium helicopters have twin engines and passenger capacity ranging from 11 to 12.

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