|Air Serbia anticipates 2014 profit after strong half yearly performance|
Air Serbia has published its half yearly results showing growth in revenue, passenger numbers and handled cargo compared to the same period last year. The airline is now confident it will achieve profitability by the end of 2014. During the first six months, revenue at the carrier grew by 82% to 102 million euros, compared to 56 million in 2013, while passenger numbers soared by 70%. The airline also reported it handled 907 tonnes of freight, a 65% increase on 2013. In addition, cargo revenue grew by 32%. Air Serbia’s passenger carrying capacity, measured in Available Seat Kilometres (ASKs), was 1.588 million in the first six months, an increase of 85% compared to the same period last year.
Air Serbia’s CEO, Dane Kondić, said, “The results are very pleasing and demonstrate how effectively the Air Serbia team is working to deliver on the strategy of sustainable growth. We are on track to deliver a profitable, strong airline by the end of the current financial year, in line with the commitment of our shareholders, the government of Serbia and Etihad Airways”. He added, “We expect to maintain the momentum for the second half of 2014, as we continue to reconnect the Balkan region and new markets, through a combination of direct flights, as well as expanding our codeshare partnerships. There is no doubt that we are bringing choice, convenience and comfort to travellers”. The airline is set to launch flights from Belgrade to Tirana later this month, connecting the two cities for the first time in six years.
In its report, the airline says it has launched eleven new routes while its growth has also produced hundreds of new jobs, with a total of 300 new employees signing on since last October. “Investing in the future, Air Serbia is planning to relaunch its cadet pilot scheme. Elsewhere, ten young graduates are currently attending a management program in Abu Dhabi with Etihad Airways and will, upon successful completion, join operating divisions across Air Serbia. The maintenance department has employed 44 engineers and technicians to establish the line maintenance facility at Belgrade’s Nikola Tesla International Airport”, the carrier concludes. Later next month, the Serbian national airline will mark its first anniversary since relaunching under its new brand.