TOP NEWS: British Airways-owner IAG has EUR1.22 billion quarterly loss

(Alliance News) - International Consolidated Airlines Group SA on Friday posted a narrowed loss ...

Alliance News 7 May, 2021 | 9:05AM
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(Alliance News) - International Consolidated Airlines Group SA on Friday posted a narrowed loss for the first quarter, though it still topped EUR1 billion amid continued disruption in the air travel industry.

The British Airways parent company recorded a quarterly EUR1.22 billion pretax loss, narrowed by 35% from EUR1.88 billion in the first quarter of 2020, while total revenue dropped 79% to EUR968 million from EUR4.59 billion.

IAG said its first quarter was badly hurt by the pandemic, as government restrictions and quarantine requirements grounded the travel sector. IAG also owns Iberia in Spain and Aer Lingus in Ireland.

For the three months to March 31, IAG posted passenger revenue of EUR459 million, down 88% from EUR3.95 billion a year ago. The airline group said it generated EUR350 million in revenue from cargo-only flights, which is a first-quarter record.

Looking ahead, IAG said it won't be issuing profit guidance for 2021 due to uncertainty over travel restrictions.

Net debt on March 31 was EUR11.56 billion, up 19% year-on-year from EUR9.76 billion, but IAG noted it has EUR10.5 billion in liquidity and good access to capital markets.

The carrier also called for government action to enable travellers to return to the skies, pointing to four measures required. These include, travel corridors without restrictions between countries with successful vaccination rollouts and effective testing such as the UK and the US.

IAG also called for affordable, simple and proportionate testing to replace quarantine and costly, multi-layered testing. It wants well-staffed borders using contactless technology including e-gates to ensure "a safe, smooth flow of people and frictionless travel".

The airline group also said digital passes for testing and vaccination documentation would be helpful to facilitate international travel. However, so-called 'vaccine passports' have drawn criticism from sceptics due to privacy, fairness and ethical concerns.

"These measures will enable a safe re-opening of our skies. Travel underpins a global industry that supports 13 million jobs in Europe alone. There's a high level of pent-up demand and aviation will play a critical role in reconnecting people and getting economies back up and running again," said IAG Chief Executive Officer Luis Gallego.

Shares were down 0.7% at 205.55 pence in London early Friday.

By Will Paige;

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Securities Mentioned in Article

Security Name Price Change (%) Morningstar
International Consolidated Airlines Group SA 200.82 GBX 0.26

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