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IndiGo posts 5-fold surge in Q4 profit on Jet turbulence

twitter-logo PTI        Last Updated: May 27, 2019  | 22:03 IST

(Eds: Correction in para 5) Mumbai, May 27 (PTI) InterGlobe Aviation, the parent company of IndiGo airline, Monday reported a five-fold jump in profit after tax to Rs 589.6 crore for January-March on the back of higher passenger revenue. IndiGo CEO Ronojoy Dutta said Jet Airways grounding also helped the carrier improve its revenue performance in the fag end of February and in entire March with the developments effectively increasing its revenue by 3-4 per cent during the whole quarter. The company had reported a net profit of Rs 117.6 crore for the January-March quarter of 2017-18. IndiGo plans to mount 30 per cent more capacity this fiscal and half of this capacity will be added on domestic routes and the rest 50 per cent on international routes, Dutta said during a call with analysts Monday. As many as 53 narrow body and and 11 ATRs are expected to be delivered to the carrier through next fiscal, he said, adding that at the same time some of the planes will be going out of the fleet. The carrier's total income rose by 35.5 per cent to Rs 8,259.8 crore in the quarter ended March 2019 compared to Rs 6,097.7 crore in the year-ago period, the company said. Net profit for the full fiscal 2018-19, however, plunged 93 per cent to Rs 156.1 crore as against Rs 2,242.4 crore in 2017-18 owing to higher fuel cost and currency fluctuation, among others, it said. "Fiscal 2019 was a tough year for the airline industry in India because of high fuel prices, weak rupee and intense competitive environment. "However, it is a tale of two halves for IndiGo, with the first half of the year incurring losses and the second half of the year experiencing a sharp recovery," Dutta commented on the 2018-19 earnings. IndiGo sees plenty of opportunities for profitable growth in its network and with a robust delivery stream of new aircraft, he said adding, "we are well positioned to capitalise on this growth". On the reported feud between the two promoters --Rahul Bhatia and Rakesh Gangwal-- Dutta reiterated that there are no "differences" on the strategy or international strategy or management selection. "There is one issue that we are debating right now and we are very optimistic that we will resolve that very shortly," he said. IndiGo expects a boost of 5 per cent in its unit revenue on account of certain internal actions it has taken, he said. "Our April revenue is stronger even during March due to the temporary suspension of Jet Airways. By May, however, as the industry has added capacity in the Jet market, this effect has started to disappear. "And by June, I think, the effect will pretty much disappear except in the few international markets, where we overlap with Jet like in the Middle-East," he said. Dutta, however, said that the capacity was added "too late" in the day, without the full benefit of 90-day window, therefore the most painful impact is in June in the metro to metro market, whose fares have come down quite appreciatively. The shape of the second quarter will depend on how capacity is played out and the pricing discipline is maintained. Standalone revenue from operations surged 23.8 per cent to Rs 28,496.80 crore in 2018-19 from Rs 23,020.90 crore in the last year. For the quarter, passenger ticket revenue was up 40.2 per cent at Rs 7,037.30 crore and ancillary revenue was Rs 826.40 crore, an increase of 24.1 per cent compared to the same period last year. Yield during the March quarter increased 12 per cent to Rs 3.70/km from Rs 3.31/km in the fourth quarter of 2017-18. Fuel cost was up 19 per cent to Rs 278.13 crore during the March quarter from Rs 233.77 crore in the period year ago. The average seat occupancy, however, decreased nearly 3 per cent to 86 per cent during the quarter under review from 88.9 per cent in the same quarter of fiscal 2017-18. The total debt as of March 31, 2019, was Rs 2,429.2 crore. As of March 31, 2019, IndiGo had a total cash balance of Rs 153,081 million comprising of Rs 60,796 million of free cash and Rs 92,285 million of restricted cash. By March-end, it had a fleet of 217 aircraft including 130 A320ceos, 71 A320neos, one A321neo and 15 ATRs; a net increase of 9 aircraft during the quarter. It operated a peak of 1,376 daily flights including international operations during the quarter and provided services to 68 destinations including 16 international cities. The airline added one international and three domestic three destinations during the quarter. It projected a 30 per cent year-on-year increase in available seat kilometres (ASK) for the ongoing quarter as well the 2019-20 fiscal. PTI DSP IAS RAM MR MR RAM RAM

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