Etihad Airways reports record first quarter
Etihad Airways has revealed first-quarter numbers worthy of the record book: Cargo profitability increased by 44 percent year on year on a capacity growth of 22 percent. March freight numbers were particularly high, in terms of revenues, number of shipments and tonnage transported.
Revenues were up 21.2 percent in early 2011, reaching $770 million. Etihad officials hope these high numbers will help them achieve their goal of breaking even in 2011 and profiting in 2012.
Etihad Airways attributes much of the success in early 2011 to high volumes of passenger and cargo traffic. Combined with a 5.9 percent decrease in costs per available seat kilometer, this 21.2 percent increase translated to positive EBITDAR (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, amortization and rentals) from January to March.
Etihad Airways CEO James Hogan believes these numbers speak volumes about his company’s business model. “These results were achieved despite significant challenges in our operating environment,” he said in a statement. “This quarter saw unrest in a number of Middle East countries, which has clearly resulted in lower traffic into those markets. The earthquake in Japan in early March has also had an impact. Our ability to respond to these situations is a reflection of the growing maturity and underlying strength of the business.”
Although Hogan admits that fuel prices will present challenges in 2011, he remains optimistic about the state of his company. “We look forward to continued development, delivering our mandate of offering the world’s best products and services, profitably, as we support the growth of our home, Abu Dhabi,” he said.