TOP NEWS: easyJet expects return to pre-virus travel despite Omicron

(Alliance News) - easyJet PLC on Tuesday reported a widened headline loss on soft demand, but ...

Alliance News 30 November, 2021 | 10:19AM
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(Alliance News) - easyJet PLC on Tuesday reported a widened headline loss on soft demand, but this was ahead of expectations, leaving the airline confident in returning to pre-virus capacity towards the end of its new financial year, despite Omicron uncertainty.

For the year ended September 30, revenue halved to GBP1.46 billion from GBP3.01 billion, as passenger numbers fell 58% to 20.4 million from 48.1 million and total capacity declined by 49% to 28.2 million seats.

easyJet's pretax loss narrowed to GBP1.04 billion from GBP1.27 billion, due to a reduction in finance charges to GBP126 million, and a non-headline gain through the sale and leaseback of 35 aircraft and two engines.

On a headline basis, excluding those non-recurring items, pretax loss widened to GBP1.14 billion from GBP833 million, although the group highlighted that this adjusted figure was ahead of consensus.

easyJet did not declare a dividend for the year, in line with the year before.

Looking ahead, easyJet said for the first quarter of its current financial year, it expects capacity to reach around 65% of pre-pandemic levels, with the load factor set to be at least 80%. Capacity is on-track to rise further in the second quarter to around 70%, before reaching near pre-virus levels by the fourth quarter.

In addition, the airline said it is too soon to fully say what effect the Omicron variant will have on European travel, but added that it was prepared for "periods of uncertainty". While easyJet has seen some "softening" of trading for the first quarter, it is still seeing solid bookings for the second half.

"We have seen an encouraging start to this year with strong demand returning for peak winter holiday periods, coupled with increasing summer demand with Q422 capacity expected to be close to FY19 levels," said Chief Executive Johan Lundgren.

"In summary, we remain mindful that many uncertainties remain as we navigate the winter, but we see a unique opportunity for easyJet to win customers and take market share from rivals in this period," Lundgren added.

Shares in easyJet were down 1.9% at 492.90 pence on Tuesday in London.

By Dayo Laniyan;

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Securities Mentioned in Article

Security Name Price Change (%) Morningstar
easyJet PLC 602.62 GBX 1.31

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