By Anil Bhoyrul
CEO says airline “on track” for full-year profitability after passenger numbers rise 34% in Q2
Etihad Airways has announced that revenues rose by 31 percent to $1.25bn in the second quarter, helped by a 34 percent rise in passengers to 2.55m during the same period.
The Abu Dhabi-based airline cited its growing network of codeshares and strategic partnerships as a major factor behind the results. It said that recent deals had helped add 800,000 passengers to its network, contributing $281m.
"We have delivered as we said we would. It's never easy and we keep having to absorb whatever comes up around the world, but these numbers show we are on the right path," CEO James Hogan told Arabian Business.
In the second quarter, the carrier took minority equity stakes in Aer Lingus (3 percent) and Virgin Australia (4.99 percent). Those purchases add to existing stakes in airberlin (almost 30 percent) and Air Seychelles (40 percent).
Together these five airlines carried 72 million passengers on 376 aircraft in 2011, generating combined revenues of more than US$14 billion.
Etihad Airways’ available seat kilometres (ASKs) rose 25 per cent to 15.2bn in the second quarter, as the fleet grew to 67 aircraft from 61. Revenue passenger kilometres (RPKs) rose 33 per cent to 11.8bn.
The average seat factor was 4.6 percentage points higher in the quarter compared to the previous year, up to 77.6 percent.
"The rise in seat factor is what is the most satisfying part of the results. We are aiming to be consistently around the 78 per cent mark. At this rate, I am confident we can deliver a stronger profit for 2012," Hogan said.