05 April 2011
Air Arabia (PJSC), the Middle East and North Africa’s first and largest low-cost carrier, announced today its financial results for the three months ending March 31, 2011, demonstrating continued profitability and meeting expectations during a quarter characterised by continuous challenges.
Air Arabia’s net profit for the three months ending March 31, 2011 stood at AED 44.2 million, a drop of 12 per cent compared to AED 50 million in the corresponding period in 2010. The solid results achieved in the first quarter of 2011 reflect the airline profitability path albeit the additional pressure on travel trends caused by recent regional uncertainty and sustained high oil prices.
In the first quarter of this year, Air Arabia posted a turnover of AED 513 million, an increase of 6 per cent compared to AED 482 million in the same period of 2010.
The airline served 1.2 million passengers in the first quarter of 2011, an increase of 11 per cent compared to 1.03 million passengers in the same period last year. In the three months ending March 31, 2011, Air Arabia’s average seat load factor – or passengers carried as a percentage of available seats – stood at an impressive 85 per cent, and increase of 6 per cent compared 80 per cent in same period of 2010.
“We are satisfied with our results for the first quarter of this year that is inline with our expectations, given the region’s uncertainty that has adversely affected the sector,” said Sheikh Abdullah Bin Mohammad Al Thani, Chairman of Air Arabia. “Though the region has clearly shown positive signs indicating the emergence from the more serious effects of the global financial downturn, the rise in fuel costs continues to challenge regional carriers. Despite this, Air Arabia has shown strong resilience and remains on a path of steady growth”.
“As we continue to build on the success of the airline’s expansion strategy into new markets in Europe, Africa and Asia, Air Arabia remains committed to expanding the size and capacity of its fleet, while providing its customers the best value for money.” Sheikh Abdullah continued.
Air Arabia took delivery of the third and fourth of 44 A320 aircraft it has ordered from Airbus. The airline will receive 4 more A320 aircraft this year which is inline of its growth plan set to expand flight destinations and significantly grow the size of its fleet by 2016.