Turkish Airlines Q1 loss widens
Istanbul, May 10, 2014
Turkish Airlines posted a much deeper first quarter loss than expected yesterday despite rising sales, as it battles tough competition from low-cost competitors.
The flag carrier, one of the world's fastest growing airlines, said its net loss widened to 226.3 million lira ($110 million), 10 times the loss a year ago and almost double the 119.4 million lira forecast in a Reuters poll of 11 analysts.
Sales rose to 5.13 billion lira from 3.59bn in the same period last year.
Turkish Airlines faces growing competition from budget carriers including Pegasus, Onur Air, Atlas Jet and IzAir, all of them serving domestic routes within Turkey as well as, in some cases, short-haul foreign destinations.
"Competition with Pegasus at (Istanbul's) Sabiha Gokcen airport has a major negative impact on its domestic services while competition on European routes hits its international revenues," Efe Kalkandelen, aviation sector analyst at Istanbul-based brokerage Is Yatirim, said ahead of the results.
He said a loss had been expected due to lower profit margins from ticket sales, despite growing passenger numbers.-Reuters