Air France-KLM doubled its third-quarter net profit year-on-year to 931 million euros, leveraging strong demand for air travel last summer that resulted in full planes and high fares .
From July to September, the Franco-Dutch group transported 26.9 million people, an increase of 7.6% compared to the same period of 2022, while its turnover increased by 6.8% to 8.66 billion euros, he said in a press release on Friday. In fact, the company, which suffered more than 11 billion euros in losses during the health crisis before returning to green in 2022, recorded this summer the largest quarterly operating profit in its history, at 1 .34 billion euros, synonymous with an operating margin of 15.5%.
Air France-KLM was certainly helped by a respite in oil prices and a positive exchange rate effect which helped offset rising costs due to inflation and wage increases, but it also managed to increase its revenue per passenger. Compared to the third quarter of 2022, Air France-KLM deployed 6% more seats to reach 94% of the 2019 level, benefiting from a higher load factor of its aircraft (1.3 points, at 90% ) and a “still high” yield per passenger, in other words more expensive tickets (1.8%).
“Air France-KLM had a solid quarter, marked by very good results. This performance was driven by strong summer demand and I would like to thank all our teams for their unfailing commitment during this season,” said the company’s managing director, Benjamin Smith, quoted in the press release. Air France-KLM must still restore its equity, which has been negative since the start of the health crisis. This should be done at the end of the financial year, once the operation confirmed Thursday evening with Apollo Global Management has been closed. The American fund has in fact agreed to inject 1.3 billion euros into a new subsidiary backed by the airline group's loyalty program, concretizing exclusive negotiations announced at the end of July.
Air France-KLM, saved from bankruptcy by the French and Dutch states during the pandemic, has shown its confidence in recent weeks, first by announcing at the end of September its desire to buy at least 50 Airbus A350s to renew the long-term fleet. -Air France couriers, then at the beginning of October by acquiring 19.9% of the struggling Scandinavian airline SAS. The group, which has said it is determined to participate in the ongoing consolidation of air transport in Europe, also has its sights set on the company TAP. Without waiting for the outcome of the privatization of the Portuguese carrier, also coveted by its European competitors, Air France-KLM demonstrated on Thursday the importance for it of profitable routes to South America by renewing for ten years its commercial partnership with the Brazilian company GOL.