Spicejet posts Rs 59 cr loss for Q4 on high fuel costs

The company had reported a net profit of Rs 27 crore during the corresponding period of 2009-10.

"One of the main reasons which affected our operations was fuel costs, which accounted for about 52 per cent of total costs during the quarter," SpiceJet CEO Neil Mills said.

Total revenues of the company, however, grew by 32.51 per cent to Rs 758 crore during the quarter vis-a-vis Rs 572 crore reported during the corresponding quarter of FY'10, he said.

For 2010-11 financial year, net profit jumped by 64.63 per cent to Rs 101.15 crore compared to a net profit of Rs 61.44 crore in FY'10.

Total income rose by over 33 per cent to Rs 2,934.38 crore in FY11 compared to Rs 2,202.40 crore of 2009-10.

"We are pleased with our results. Despite higher fuel costs in the last quarter and irrational behaviour on pricing front by the competitors, we have managed to keep costs under control.

"We have, in fact, outperformed the industry during the year as our domestic passenger traffic has increased by 30 per cent, while industry average was 19 per cent," Mills said.

The expenses of the airline on air turbine fuel (ATF) were higher at 41.79 per cent of its total revenues during the year vis-a-vis 36.97 per cent in FY'10.

Mills also said that the coming quarters are going to be tough for both the industry and the airline "due to expensive fuel prices and irrational pricing behaviour of the competitors".

He, however, declined to comment on what kind of pricing pressures are applied by other airline companies.

Talking about adding new aircraft to its fleet, Mills said that of its order of 15 Q400 NextGen turboprop aircraft placed with Bombardier Inc of Canada, the low-cost airline will receive four in July.

"We expect to get four aircraft from Bombardier in July and they will be based at Hyderabad airport. We intend to fly it to destinations in the range of an hour or so," he said, adding that the company expects to get 11 such aircraft from Bombardier by March, 2012.

Asked about the orders placed with Boeing, he said that "seven new aircraft will be delivered by the end of this year, taking our total Boeing fleet to 25. Of this, we expect to get two aircraft in June, while rest will be delivered in the fourth quarter."

The SpiceJet CEO further said that the airline requires about USD 200-250 million to finance its purchase of aircraft during the current year but mode of funding has not been decided yet.

SpiceJet, which currently operates two international routes, Kathmandu and Colombo, also plans to commence flights to destinations in South Asia and the Middle-East in the coming months, a statement of the airline said.

The statement added that the airline will have around 70 aircraft, including the Q400 Bombardier aircraft, in its fleet by 2013.

Kalanithi Maran-promoted airline currently has a 13 per cent market share in domestic aviation sector and operates 192 flights daily to 21 destinations.

The shares of the airline settled at Rs 39.40 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, down by 0.63 per cent over the previous close.

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