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Jazeera Airways swings to 2011 net profit

Kuwait, March 6, 2012

Kuwait-based budget carrier Jazeera Airways Group has registered a KD10.6 million ($38 million) net profit for 2011 when compared to net loss of KD2.8 million the year before and also announced 10 per cent bonuse shares for its investors.

Announcing the results on Tuesday, Jazeera said it flew a record 1.2 million passengers taking the airline's revenue to KD57.8 million for the year, up 36 per cent from 2010. Besides, it also posted a record KD14.9 million in operating profit for the year.

The results with an earnings per share of 0.048 fils reflect the success of the company’s Turn-Around Plan (TAP) implemented in second quarter of 2010 and steered the company into continued profitability for the last six quarters, five of which had realized record-breaking earnings, the Kuwaiti airline said in a statement.

The record performance was mainly due to key factors including yield enhancement, robust cost management, strong network and continued focus on customers, it added.

The company also announced its fourth quarter 2011 results, reporting a net profit before tax of KD1.4 million and revenues of KD13.3 million.

Commenting on the results, Group chairman Marwan Boodai said, “The year 2011 was a record-breaking year despite the continued over capacity, the impact of political unrest on travel within our network, and an increasing fuel cost.'

'Jazeera Airways today has a solid network, increasing load factors, reduced cost, and high aircraft utilization, in addition the aircraft leasing arm has assets deployed across the globe, from the US to the Middle East to Asia. Jazeera Airways Group today has a sustainable business model that has generated sustainable profitability quarter-on-quarter for six quarters in-a-row,” he added.

Speaking to investors and analysts in a webcast held on Tuesday, Boodai gave an overview of the company’s focus areas and milestones in 2011.

“We had three priorities in 2011. First, building on the momentum of record-breaking returns seen in the third quarter and the fourth quarter of 2010. Second, successfully mitigating the impact of the political unrest on the business.And third, capturing a strong market share on the Cairo-Kuwait route that was launched in May 2011,” he stated.

To secure the momentum, the company concentrated on optimizing its flight schedules to the benefit of passengers while maintaining high aircraft utilization.

Jazeera also supported its operation with continued investment in marketing, advertising, and experience-enhancing initiatives, such as increased baggage allowance for business class and changing in-flight meals on a monthly basis. While at the same time, boosting yields without cannibalizing on load factor.

The second priority was to reduce the impact of the political unrest on the business. The company activated the Jazeera Airways Emergency Response Team (ERT) with round-the-clock monitoring of the each situation keeping a close eye on the developments that might impact safety of the airline’s crew, passengers, and assets at all times.

'To reduce the commercial impact on the business and compensate for the temporary drop in demand, capacity was redeployed by increasing flights to other cities that witnessed a surge in demand as alternative destinations. Specifically Dubai, Jeddah and Cairo,' remarked Boodai.

The company’s third priority for the year was to make sure that the newly launched and long-awaited Kuwait-Cairo route was kicked off to a great start by focusing marketing activities on re-building demand in a post-revolution market.

'The results were very positive. Jazeera secured an 11 per cent market share in the first two weeks, 23 per cent in the first 4 weeks, and maintained an 18 per cent market share during the slow post-summer travel season,' he noted.

Boodai said 2011 was a challenging year but a record-breaking year as well for Jazeera Airways.

'Our priorities for 2012 are to grow load factor while maintaining high yields and we believe we will be able to achieve this goal because we have the right network with the right capacity, the right product for our market, and a tried and tested team that has successfully navigated the company through the last two years with flying colors,' he added.

On the 2012 outlook, Boodai said, 'It continues to be positive in line with a growing Kuwaiti economy, which continues to witness higher incomes despite international and regional economic pressures.

“The year witnessed varying external challenges, from multiple revolutions taking place in our network to fuel price hikes at both ends of the year, despite that 2011 was a record-breaking year for us. As the region returns to calm we look forward to the continuation of our strong performance,” he added.-TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Airline | Kuwait | Jazeera Airways | Flights | profit | Passengers | Revenue |

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