Kenya Airways Ltd announced at an investor briefing at Nairobi’s Upper Hill on Thursday that it has suffered an annual loss of around $100 million. This marks the fourth consecutive year that the airline has been in the red.
However, Kenya Airways executives spun the news as an improvement, pointing out they had managed to stem the even more severe losses of previous years. Here are the facts:
- Losses for the full-year period ended March 31st stood at 10.2 billion Kenyan shillings ($98.8 million). This cut the bleeding 61% compared to the previous year’s 26.2 billion shilling loss.
- Operating profit, which is the profit of business operations before taxes and interest, stood at 897 million shillings compared with a loss of 4 billion shillings in the previous year.
- Cabin load factor, which measures average occupancy on flights, rose by 4% since last year up to 72%. Total passenger numbers were up 5.4 percent for a total of 4.5 million. African routes saw a 13 percent jump in traffic.
- Kenya Airways has a net debt of more than US $1 billion. The company expects to announce a major capital restructuring in the next two months, but it is still negotiating with creditors and shareholders to extend the maturity of the debt.
- Cost-saving measures in the past 1.5 year include cutting eight Boeing aircraft from the airline’s fleet. The company says it has introduced hundreds more cost-saving initiatives on top of this.
- Kenya Airways tried to dampen expectations for the current year, saying that the business environment is still tough due to elections in Africa, currency depreciation, terrorism, taxation and other factors. It said currency depreciation in Egypt, Sudan, South Sudan, Angola, Mozambique and Nigeria is a key risk making it hard to price services and repatriate cash.
- Mbuvi Ngunze is expected to step down as chief executive next week. His replacement will be Sebastian Mikosz, who oversaw the turnaround of Poland’s Lot Airlines.
- Kenya Airways is 29.8 per cent owned by the Kenyan government and 26.7 per cent by Air France-KLM.
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