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easyJet first quarter 2008-09 results

22nd January 2009 - 09:44 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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easyJet has released results for the first quarter of its financial year. Total revenue grew by 32% to £550 million with a strong performance across the network, with total revenue per seat growing by 23% to £45.57, an increase per seat of 14% on a constant currency basis.

Traffic-wise, 10.1 million passengers were carried, up 10.1% versus the last year, with a 20% growth in passengers originating in mainland Europe. Load factor for the period rose by 2.6 percentage points to 83.4% from 80.8% for the same quarter in 2007. The airline says it strengthened its position in the key markets of London Gatwick, Milan, Paris and Madrid.

easyJet's balance sheet remains strong with cash and money market deposits of £801 million (excluding restricted cash) and un-drawn financing facilities of $1 billion at favourable rates as at 31 December 2008.

"This is a good performance, especially the 14% increase in our total revenue per seat at constant currency and the 20% growth in non UK originating passenger numbers," commented Andy Harrison, easyJet's chief executive. "In the current economic climate there is a 'flight to value' with European consumers choosing the benefits of easyJet’s great value network serving primary airports. In particular, we are seeing business travellers and long-haul leisure travellers switching to easyJet in search of better value. This is more than compensating for some softness in discretionary travel and means easyJet continues to win market share.

"easyJet revenues for the first half will be ahead of previous guidance, although the unit revenue outlook for the summer remains uncertain due to the difficult macro-economic environment and any potential impact from the strengthening of the euro against sterling. Consequently, easyJet reiterates guidance that for the full year at current fuel and exchange rates easyJet expects to be profitable."

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