Air Arabia has reported a strong financial performance for the first quarter of 2016 exceeding analyst expectations as the low cost carrier continued to deliver and attract new customers.
Air Arabia reported a net profit of AED114 million for the three months ending March 31, 2016, 34% higher than the corresponding 2015 figure of AED85 million.
In the same period, the airline posted a turnover of AED946 million, an increase of 7% on AED886 million in the first quarter of last year.
The airline flew more than 2.1 million passengers between January and March 2016, up 17% on the corresponding period of last year.
The airline’s average seat load factor – or passengers carried as a percentage of available seats – during the first three months of 2016 stood at 81%.
Sheikh Abdullah Bin Mohamed Al Thani, chairman of Air Arabia, said: “Air Arabia has made an excellent start to 2016, maintaining the momentum we established last year and attracting new customers to our brand.
“Our operational efficiency allied to the success of our route expansion strategy and the popularity of our value-add service proposition, leaves Air Arabia well placed to navigate the current macroeconomic challenges and benefit from the many opportunities in the region’s aviation sector,” he said.
Air Arabia added two new routes from its main hub in Sharjah in the first three months of 2016, both of which strengthened its presence at the intersection of Europe and Asia.
In March, it began direct flights between Sharjah and Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. This was followed by news that Air Arabia will operate seasonal direct flights from Sharjah to Batumi, Georgia, between July and September to cater to summer tourist demand.
In addition, Air Arabia added three new routes in the first quarter of this year from its operating hubs in Morocco and Jordan.