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easyJet profits grow as airline flies in face of Brexit concerns

The airline, headquartered at London Luton Airport, flew a record 88.5 million passengers in the year to September, figures which pushed its revenue total up by 16.8% to £5,898 million.

And the airline is looking forward to a good 2019. easyJet’s capacity growth in the first half is forecast at circa 15% and at circa 10% for the full year. Bookings are solid for the first half of the year, with summer bookings looking promising – ahead of summer 2018 and despite the UK’s departure from the EU at the end of March.

easyJet has continued to prepare for Brexit, operating via airlines in the UK, Switzerland and Austria to enable ongoing flying in Europe. It  is close to achieving majority EEA (excluding UK) ownership, currently at 47%.

Acquisition of part of Air Berlin’s operations at Berlin Tegel a year ago for €40 million, has given easyJet a strong number one position in Europe’s third largest market. The airline now flies more than 20 aircraft from the airport.

The figures have been boosted further by cost and efficiency savings of around £107 million

easyJet will continue to pursue disciplined growth, supported by the agreement with Airbus for 17 firm orders, 18 deferrals and 25 purchase options over the next five years, said chief executive Johan Lundgren. Good progress has been made on new initiatives in loyalty, holidays and business, he added.

“easyJet has delivered a great performance during the year. Our financial success and increasing customer loyalty demonstrate the resilience of our operations, the underlying strength of our business and our unrivalled customer experience. 

“Our strategy continues to ensure we are well positioned for the future. We have made considerable progress on our new initiatives in holidays, business and loyalty, which will enable us to grow profitably.

“While disruption continues to be a major challenge for the industry, we are investing in resilience to help to mitigate the impact on our customers.   

“Forward bookings are solid, with 50% of seats sold in the first half, in line with the prior year. We are confident in our positioning for the future and are focused on driving future returns, positive free cash flow over the longer term and maximising our headline profit per seat as we continue to deliver value for our customers and shareholders.” 

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