National carrier Kenya Airways (KQ) has recorded a 67% loss increase in its half-year financial results
Kenya Airways has posted a pretax loss of 8.56 billion Kenyan shillings and a posttax loss of Ksh 14 billion during the first half of 2019, compared with a loss of 3.99 billion shillings in the same period last year.
The airline recorded a 12.2% increase in revenue for the six months’ period ended June 30, 2019, attributed to the positive performance of recently introduced routes, in line with the airline’s network expansion strategy.
The national carrier’s expansion strategy includes investment in new strategic routes such as New York, Mauritius, Libreville, Mogadishu, Rome, Geneva, and Malindi.
However, the coronavirus pandemic brought the airline back in its expansion plans. While releasing the half-year results, the carrier said on Friday that passenger numbers dropped by 55.5% to 1.1 million in comparison to 2.4 million over the same period last year.
KQ Chairman Michael Joseph said that the coronavirus pandemic is the main reason the airline’s revenue has dropped this year.
“Operations were severely impacted by the Covid-19 crisis resulting in depressed half year results,” said Michael Joseph, “The network activity from April to June was minimal due to travel restrictions and lockdowns effectively reducing operations to almost nil in connecting our home market to key cities.”
Michael Joseph further said that the airline was already improving its performance prior to the global pandemic.
“We continue to steer the business away from the previous headwinds, steadily digging it out of the historic loss of Ksh. 25 billion posted in 2014,” he said, “As at the end of 2018, the losses had narrowed by over 250%. This is a testament of our commitment to turnaround Kenya Airways.”
During the period, the airline brought back two Boeing 787 aircraft to its operating fleet that had been previously sub-leased to Oman Air to support the new routes.
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