Ryanair Holdings Plc (NASDAQ: RYAAY) on Monday said its net loss came in lower-than-expected for the fiscal third quarter. Shares still slipped 5.0% on weak guidance and revenue that missed estimates.
CFO discussed quarterly results on CNBC’s ‘Squawk Box’
Ryanair said its net loss printed at €96 million ($107 million) versus the year-ago figure of €321 million. It generated €1.47 billion in revenue – over 325% growth from last year. According to FactSet, experts had forecast €95.6 million in net loss on an even higher €1.52 billion in revenue.
On CNBC’s “Squawk Box”, CFO Neil Sorahan agreed performance was hit due to Omicron in the holiday season but said:
We’ve noticed an increase in European bookings over the past couple of weeks on the back of UK and Irish governments announcing relaxation of restrictions put in place for COVID pre-Christmas. I think other governments will likely follow over the next few weeks.
He, however, expects flights to outside of Europe to take a bit longer to recover. Load factor stood at 81% in December after 86% in November
Ryanair said it was uncertain about pricing and yields in 2022 due to Omicron, which was also why it guided for a wider-than-normal range of €250 million to €450 million in full-year net loss. Sorahan added:
I’d be somewhat cautious. Omicron took everybody by surprise. There may be another twist in this over the next number of weeks, so it’s right to be cautious, but if we get to the other side into easter and beyond, I think it could be good for the summer.
Ryanair wants to more than double traffic by 2026
Other notable figures included a 24% decline in average fares, an 8.0% increase in ancillary revenue per passenger, and a 140% increase in operating costs. Ryanair said it is committed to paying back more than €2.0 billion of its current net debt within the next 24 months.
The low-budget air carrier expects to fly just under 100 million passengers this fiscal year and aims at lifting that number to over 225 million over the next five years. According to Sorahan:
As we look into the next summer, we’re planning to ramp up capacity to about 114% of what it was pre-COVID. We’ll have about 65 of the Boeing game-changer aircraft in our fleet by this summer, which will drive that growth.
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