Liverpool John Lennon Airport’s biggest airline by passenger numbers carried a record 24.1m people in the last quarter with full-year profits forecast to be as high as £410m. Tony McDonough reports
Record numbers of passengers flew with low cost airline easyJet this summer – and the turmoil affecting rivals Ryanair and the collapsed Monarch is to offer a further boost.
In the final quarterly trading update before its full-year results the company forecast pre-tax profits of £405m to £410m for the year to September 30, at the upper end of expectations.
Currency volatility through the year mean it will likely take a hit of £100m compared to last year although its fuel bill is expected to have fallen by up to £235m.
Operating 28 routes out of Liverpool John Lennon Airport (LJLA), easyJet is the biggest airline at LJLA by passenger numbers.
And this is set to increase next summer when the carrier adds another Airbus A320 aircraft to its current seven-strong fleet at LJLA.
In recent weeks easyJet has watched the operations its main rival Ryanair descend into chaos with staffing issue causing the cancellation of 700,000 flights over the autumn and winter period. Added to this is the collapse of another rival airline Monarch.
Chief executive Carolyn McCall said: “The current turmoil in the sector provides easyJet with opportunities to capitalise on its strong customer proposition and grow and strengthen our positions in Europe’s leading airports still further.”
In the three months to September 30 easyJet carried a record 24.1m passengers and enjoyed a load factor (percentage of seats filled) of 95.6%.
Shares in easyJet fell almost 3% following the announcement as it added that continued downward pressure on fares would affect its yields (revenue-per-seat).
Ms McCall added: “EasyJet has finished the year with continued positive momentum delivering both a strong final quarter and a strong second half.”