Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 5°C

min temp: 4°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Aviation: Growth at easyJet fails to impress City

10:40 23 January 2014

Carolyn McCall, chief executive of easyJet.

Carolyn McCall, chief executive of easyJet.


A rise in easyJet’s quarterly revenues to £897million failed to inspire the City today as the budget airline posted its first trading update since notching up an annual profits increase of 51%.


Shares in easyJet slipped in early trading despite the 7.7% increase in turnover for the three months to the end of December, as one analyst said the figures “did not quite match the great expectations to which investors have become accustomed”.

The number of passengers carried increased by 4.2% to 14.3million, with business passengers up by 8.9%. Revenue per seat was up by 3.4% as expected to £55.71, despite tough comparisons with a post-Olympics getaway surge in 2012.

But bookings for the first half are expected to be flat on the year before and pre-tax losses for the six-month period are forecast to increase to between £70m and £90m because of the timing of Easter.

The group said tough competition together with restrictions on travel to Egypt had also taken their toll on performance. There were also higher costs from airport charges and maintenance.

But it was helped by the closure of underperforming routes, changes to fees and charges and the performance of allocated seating, as well as improvements to the website and an increase in non-seat revenue by 8p to 88p per passenger.

The group said it had sold 15% of seats for the second half of the financial year, in line with the year before. It was still too early to give guidance on expected profits for the period.

Chief executive Carolyn McCall said: “Easyjet has made a good start to the year. We have delivered revenue per seat growth in the quarter against a challenging competitive environment and the tough comparison with the previous year.”

The airline is to begin operations from a new base at Naples in the spring. New routes from Hamburg and Rome Fiumicino have also recently been announced.

It is also looking to connect more airports in its network and has said it will increase the number of routes to Tel Aviv.

Annual profits at the carrier soared by half to £478m for the year to the end of September but analysts expect this growth to slow in the current year.

Cantor Fitzgerald’s Robin Byde said the latest trading statement was solid but that expectations of easyJet’s first half performance meant the stock’s valuation was “no longer compelling”.

Shares, which have more than doubled in value over the last year, were down 2% following the announcement.

Richard Hunter, head of equities at Hargreaves Lansdown stockbrokers, said: “The update does not quite match the great expectations to which investors have become accustomed. The fact remains, however, that easyJet has been a stunning success story.”



Ipswich council leader David Ellesmere at the former sugar beet factory site off Sproughton Road.

A new Enterprize Zone involving 10 development sites across East Anglia, with the potential to create 18,500 jobs, was announced by Chancellor George Osborne today.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, delivering his joint Autumn Statement and Spending Review to MPs in the House of Commons
Photo: PA Wire

The Chancellor’s Autumn Statement and Comprehensive Spending Review today divided opinion between unions employers.

The Buttermarket Centre will become a £35m entertainment complex

Cinema giant Empire has signed up for a new £35m leisure complex being created in the Buttermarket Shopping Centre, Ipswich.

Natalie Moloney, of Woodbridge events firm Pink Lemonade Productions.

An entrepreneur is up for a fifth business award since her event planning company launched last year.

Tony Willson, managing director of Helmsman Services.

Colchester-based training specialist Helmsman Services has secured the largest contract in its 17 year history, for its construction-specific e-learning health and safety courses.

Thomas Cook has reported its first annual profit for five years.

The boss of holiday firm Thomas Cook said yesterday that disruption experience since the deadly terrorist attacks in Tunisia, Egypt and Paris was “unprecedented” in his 30-year career.

Households with children led an increase in leisure spending during October, according to Greene King.

Greene King has reported a boost to leisure spending during October from the Rugby World Cup and the release of the new James Bond film, Spectre.

Hopkins Homes' Bure Place development.

Suffolk-based housebuilder Hopkins Homes has now achieved a hat-trick of national awards for its restoration and conversion of a Victorian listed building in Norfolk.

Andy Fisk and Ian Tooke are the new  joint managing directors at JR Executive Travel.

Suffolk-based JR Executive Travel has been acquired in a buy-out deal valuing the business at £1.8million.

Jonathan Agar of Birketts. left, with Ian Thoroughgood of Grant Thornton.

Suffolk’s leading companies have together recorded solid growth in sales and profits over the past year, according to the new Suffolk Limited report from Grant Thornton.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages

Local business directory

Our trusted business finder

Property search

e.g. Oxford or NW3
Powered by Zoopla

Digital Edition

Read the East Anglian Daily Times e-edition today E-edition

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24