COVID 19 lands Air Arabia ‘in the black’ with AED192 mn FY20 loss

COVID 19 lands Air Arabia ‘in the black’ with AED192 mn FY20 loss

BBN Report

Revenue down 61 pc to AED1.85 bn; Posts AED20 mn Q4 profit

DUBAI/February 11-2021: Air Arabia, the first and the largest low-cost carrier (LCC) in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), is one of the hardest hit by the COVID 19 outbreak with the financial year 2020 (FY20) having closed with a loss of AED192.18 million as against a handsome net profit of AED1.01 billion a year earlier.

The revenue during FY20 dropped more than 61 per cent from AED4.76 billion to AED1.85 billion for the year under review landing the company in the ‘black’.

Q4 profit

However, the trendsetter airline reported a net profit of AED20 million for the three months ending December 31, 2020, still 90 per cent less than the corresponding profit for the fourth quarter 2019.

In the same period, the airline posted a turnover of AED536 million, 53 per cent less than the corresponding fourth quarter of last year, while serving more than 1.2 passengers between October and December 2020 across the carrier’s five hubs.

The company said 2020 has been one of the most difficult years, if not the most, on the aviation and tourism industry due to the unprecedented lockdown measures, restrictions and precautionary measures.

“This has directly led to the bankruptcy of many airlines worldwide and forced governments to bail out and inject liquidity to save airlines globally,” the company statement noted.

Measures to check cost

The early measures taken by the airline to control overall cost while ensuring business continuity, has helped Air Arabia register a profitable fourth quarter despite performance being impacted by COVID-19 pandemic.

Sheikh Abdullah Bin Mohamed Al Thani (seen in the picture), Chairman of Air Arabia, said that the airline’s ability to register a profitable fourth quarter despite continued impact of COVID-19 pandemic, is a testament to the robust business model it operates.

“The early measures taken by the management team to control overall cost and the gradual resumption of flights, albeit a limited number of destinations have helped registering a profitable fourth quarter while significantly reducing the net loss expected for the full year,” he said.

At Air Arabia said it is focused on adopting further measures to help improve the overall cost structure of the group while continuing to gradually resume operations where possible.

Air Arabia Abu Dhabi

The year 2020 witnessed the launch of Air Arabia Abu Dhabi, which was formed following an agreement by Etihad Airways and Air Arabia to establish the capital’s first low-cost carrier.

Air Arabia Abu Dhabi first flight took off to Alexandria in July and was followed by the launch of eight additional routes from Abu Dhabi International Airport.

The carrier took delivery of 2 new Airbus A321 neo-LR aircraft and ended the year with a fleet of 57 Airbus A320 and A321.


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