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Wizz Air Holdings PLC

Wizz Air Holdings PLC 18% Passenger Growth and Record Profit of €372M

Wizz Air Holdings Plc (LON: WIZZ), the largest low-cost airline in Central and Eastern Europe, has issued unaudited results for the six months to 30th September 2019.

Six months to 30 September  2019 2018IFRS 16RestatedChange
 Passengers carried (million)22.118.8+17.9%
 Revenue (€ million)1,670.81,373.0+21.7%
 EBITDA (€ million)609.1505.7+20.4%
 EBITDA margin (%)36.536.8(0.4ppt)
 Profit for the period (€ million)371.5200.6+85.2%
 Profit margin for the period (%)22.214.6+7.6ppt
 Net profit excluding foreign currency loss (€ million)374.3288.0+30.0%
 Net profit margin for the period excluding foreign currency loss (%)22.421.0+1.4ppt
 Ex-fuel CASK (€ cent)2.222.28(2.8%)
 CASK (€ cent)3.363.37(0.2%)
 RASK (€ cent)4.394.27+2.7%
 Cash and cash equivalents (€ million)1,633.31,156.8+24.1%
 Load factor (%)94.693.6+1ppt
Six months to 30 September 2019    2018As originally presented Change   
Net profit for the period (€ million)371.5294.3+26.2%
Net profit margin for the period (%)22.2%21.4%+0.8ppt
      

The IFRS 16 restatement for 2018 is explained in Note 7 to the financial statements.

The EBITDA, CASK and profit measures for 2018 in these tables are for continuing operations (see also Note 6).

‘Net profit excluding foreign currency loss’ is profit after tax (for continuing operation in case of 2018) excluding the amount of net foreign exchange result in the period.

RECORD FINANCIAL RESULTS IN H1

· Total revenue increased 21.7% to €1,670.8 million:

o Ticket revenues increased 11.4% to €956.6 million

o Ancillary revenues increased 38.8% to €714.2 million

o Total unit revenue increased 2.7% to 4.39 Euro cents per available seat per kilometre (ASK)

o Ancillary revenue per passenger increased 17.8% to €32.3

· Total cost increased 21.1% to €1,256.2m

o Total unit costs decreased by 0.2% year-on-year to 3.36 Euro cents per ASK

o Ex-fuel unit costs decreased by 2.8% year-on-year to 2.22 Euro cents per ASK

o Fuel unit costs increased by 5.3% year-on-year to 1.15 Euro cents per ASK

· Profit for the period was a record €371.5 million

· Profit for the second quarter was a record €299.1 million, year-on-year increase of 30.7%

· Total cash at the end of September 2019 was €1,819.2 million of which €1,633.3 million was free cash

BUSINESS DEVELOPMENTS AND INNOVATION

· Launched the Wizz Care’s Sustainability Platform to build awareness of the many initiatives already being taken by Wizz Air and those planned to ensure that Wizz Air remains one of the more sustainable airlines in the world

· Shareholders approved a purchase order for 20 Airbus A321neo XLR aircraft being delivered from 2023 onwards

· Named “The Best Low Cost Carrier of the Year” at the European Aviation Awards

· Named one of the safest low cost carrier of 2019 in the world by airline safety and product rating agency AirlineRatings.com

· Surpassed the 4 million monthly passenger mark in August 2019 for the first time

LEADING POSITION IN CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE

· Passengers carried increased 17.9% to 22.1 million, securing Wizz Air’s position as CEE’s number one ultra-low cost carrier

· Wizz Air started 76 new routes in H1 and now offers more than 710 routes to 44 countries from 25 bases.

· The Company announced its first ever flights from London Luton to Moscow and St. Petersburg and new entry into Brussels Zaventem, Edinburgh, London Southend and Odessa.

· The fleet continued to grow with 3 new Airbus A321neo and 2 new Airbus A321ceo aircraft added during the period taking the fleet to 119 aircraft at the end of the first half: 72 A320ceo, 41 A321ceo and 6 A321neo aircraft

· Average aircraft age of 4.97 years, one of the youngest fleets of any major European airline.

József Váradi, Wizz Air Holdings Chief Executive commented on the results:

“Wizz Air again reports all-time high financial results for the first half of our current financial year as our low fare – low cost business model delivered an 18% increase in passenger numbers, higher load factors, strong cost and yield performance with ex-fuel unit cost down 3% and unit revenue up 3% year-on-year. These outcomes delivered a record net profit of €372 million. We are particularly pleased to report expanding net profit margin while delivering industry leading growth rates in an operating environment of higher fuel prices.

Wizz Air is the lowest cost producer in the industry in Europe and the largest airline in the growing CEE market, making us a long-term structural winner in the aviation sector. We will continue to enhance our market-leading position with the roll out of the game-changing, attractively priced and financed A321 neo aircraft which will enable Wizz Air to continue widening our cost advantage over our competitors.”

Commenting on business developments and sustainability initiatives, Mr Váradi added:

“Wizz Air announced some exciting business developments in the first half including a purchase order for 20 Airbus A321XLR aircraft taking our committed fleet order to 268 aircraft. These industry-leading, cost efficient aircraft will allow us to connect even more airports within our wide and diverse network. We were also proud to be named “The Best Low Cost Carrier of the Year” at the European Aviation Awards; an accolade which is a credit to the entire Wizz team.

Not content with being Europe’s lowest cost airline, Wizz Air is also proud to be Europe’s greenest airline, as defined by CO2 emissions per passenger kilometre. This existing leadership position is reinforced by our commitment to further reducing our CO2 emissions per passenger kilometre by 30 percent by 2030 as we continue to introduce the ultra-efficient A321neo, which we operate with high seat count and high load factors.

In addition to our environmental efforts, Wizz Air has a well-developed Sustainability Framework covering the social and environmental pillars of this important part of being a responsible corporate citizen. The detail of this framework can be found on our website https://wizzair.com/en-gb/information-and-services/about-us/sustainability. An important part of this is our commitment to gender diversity and we are proud to confirm that there is zero pay gap between genders in similar roles within Wizz Air. We have also recently committed to driving the recruitment of women in our pilot ranks and will provide details of this initiative in the coming months.”

On current trading and the outlook for the full year, Mr Váradi said:

“On the back of a strong first half we will be accelerating second half growth to 22%. Notwithstanding this faster pace of growth and the genuine macro-economic challenges which always exist, the more recent supporting market conditions mean we are seeing our business tracking towards the top end of our current net profit guidance range which gives us confidence to tighten the range to between €335 million and €350 million for the full year.”

FULL YEAR FY20 GUIDANCE

The stronger yield environment, along with the Company’s ever disciplined attitude to costs, will enable Wizz Air to accelerate growth profitably during the second half. As a result the Company’s full year net profits guidance is tightened to €335 to €350 million. The table below sets out the components of the Company’s full year outlook.

2020 Financial YearPreviously
Capacity growth (ASKs)20%
Average stage lengthModerate increase
Load Factor1%
Fuel CASK7%
Ex-fuel CASK (including net interest expense)Slightly negativeBroadly flat
Total CASK2%
RASKSlightly positive
Tax rate4%
Net profit€335 – €350 million€320 – €350 million