flydubai announces 14.4% passenger growth to 10.4 million and profit of AED 31.6 million

Eleanor Steed
By Eleanor Steed February 2, 2017 12:49

flydubai announces 14.4% passenger growth to 10.4 million and profit of AED 31.6 million

Flydubai has reported a full-year profit of AED 31.6 million (USD 8.6 million). It has reported total revenue of AED 5 billion (USD 1.37 billion) an increase of 2.4% compared to the same period last year. The stronger second half, driven by increased passenger numbers, was impacted by downward pressure on yield leading to lower overall revenue growth reflecting a continuation of the same adverse factors reported in the first half.

His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of flydubai, said: Tthese results see flydubai report its fifth consecutive full-year of profitability. In 2012, our third year of operation, we carried 5.1 million passengers. This year, we have carried 10.4 million passengers demonstrating that flydubai continues to help change the way both business and leisure passengers travel around the region. An established tourism destination and global centre for business together with the UAE’s geographic location has supported the need for increased connectivity.”

Ghaith Al Ghaith, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of flydubai, reviewing the Annual Results for 2016, commented: “Over the last two years we have seen passenger traffic grow cumulatively by 52% in terms of RPKM. We continue to demonstrate that we gain loyal customers across our network who recognise the benefits of direct air links and enjoy our onboard offering. The continuation of mainly lower fuel prices and ongoing cost management efforts are reflected in the 16% improvement in terms of ASKM over the last two years. We have however seen a difficult pricing and operating environment.”

EBITDAR was healthy at 21.1% of revenue; an improvement from the previous year’s figure of 20.5%.

The closing cash and cash equivalents position, including pre-delivery payments for future aircraft deliveries, remained strong at AED 2.3 billion.

Fuel costs were 25% of operating costs compared to 30.6% in the previous year, against a backdrop of lower fuel prices for the year, with legacy fuel hedges impacting only 21% of the volume for full year 2016.

Ancillary revenue comprising of baggage, cargo and inflight sales contributed 13.8% of revenue; dropping from 15.1% from the previous year.

During 2017, flydubai will be the first airline in the Middle East to receive the new model Boeing 737 MAX 8 and the first of these aircraft will enter into service in the second half of the year. The overall capacity will not grow during 2017, as short term capacity needs are adjusted, due to the ongoing challenging operating environment. Since launch, one of the principles of flydubai’s fleet planning strategy was to maintain a young fleet. Under these plans, the airline will see the eight-year lease term expire for 4 Next-Generation Boeing 737-800 and during the year these aircraft will be retired from the fleet.

Ghaith Al Ghaith, CEO of flydubai, looking to the year ahead, said: “we will remain prudent throughout 2017 as we will continue to operate in a challenging socioeconomic environment. Yields will remain under pressure and we expect to report flat growth in the year ahead. We are looking forward to receiving the first Boeing 737 MAX 8 in the region which will bring further fuel and operating efficiency to our young modern fleet. We are focused on our strategy to lead in innovation, to provide an unrivalled experience on board and on the ground, as we continue to meet the travel demands of our passengers.”

Eleanor Steed
By Eleanor Steed February 2, 2017 12:49