SpiceJet Q4 net profit falls 43% to Rs41.6 crore

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Mumbai: Budget carrier SpiceJet Ltd on Saturday reported 43% fall in net profit at Rs41.6 crore for the fourth quarter ended March due to higher fuel cost and lower yield on account of demonetisation.

The Gurgaon-based carrier had reported a net profit of Rs73 crore during the January-March quarter of the 2015-16 fiscal. However, for the full fiscal 2016-17, the airline posted a net profit of Rs430 crore as compared to Rs407 crore reported in the fiscal year ended March 2016.

SpiceJet reported a quarterly profit of Rs41.6 crore for the three months ended March, making it the ninth successive profitable quarter for the airline, SpiceJet said in a release on Saturday. The net profit for FY17 stood at Rs430.7 crore, making this the second successive year of profitable growth, it said.

According to the airline, the operating revenues were at Rs1,625.7 crore for Q4 and Rs6,191.3 crore for the fiscal 2017. SpiceJet’s strong operational performance comes despite significant headwinds, it said adding that demonetisation resulted in significant decline in yield in Q3 and Q4. Increase in fuel cost was at 46% in Q4 eroding approximately Rs160 crore of profit, it said. These headwinds have subsided and SpiceJet is bullish about its future prospects, the airline said.

“Two successive profitable years, a record aircraft order and emerging as India’s largest regional operator are testament of the fact that SpiceJet remains firmly on track on its long-term growth strategy,” SpiceJet chairman and managing director Ajay Singh said in the release.

SpiceJet had in January this year announced that it will buy up to 205 new aircraft from Boeing for Rs1,50,000 crore, in one of the largest deals in the fast-growing Indian aviation sector. The order of 205 aircraft signifies the strategic direction in which SpiceJet is now committed upon, the airline said. “The historic order ends the turnaround phase for SpiceJet and marks the beginning of a growth story, which will see the airline expand its wings—both within and outside the country,” the airline said.

“During this fiscal, SpiceJet completed its turnaround successfully by discharging all its obligations to its business partners, implemented cost savings measures by restructuring contracts and its business processes,” it said.

According to the airline, besides adding capacity on existing routes, it was awarded six proposals and 11 routes under the UDAN regional connectivity scheme of the Central government. With three-year exclusivity on the routes under the UDAN scheme, SpiceJet will be the only airline to operate on those sectors, it said.

The airline is also set to benefit from the reduced cost on account of low jet fuel taxes and exemption from landing and parking charges at regional airports under UDAN, the release said. It also said that this summer the airline increased its regional capacity by 25% and will further augment capacity in this segment.

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