Emirates airline reports a profit of $288 million, for the year ended on March 31, 2020, which is 21 percent up from the previous year, reads the Emirates Group's 2019-20 annual report released on Sunday in Dubai.
During the same period, Emirates Group comprising Emirates Airline, dnata and their subsidiaries posted a profit of $456, which is 28 percent down from the last year.
The Group announced its 32nd consecutive year of profit, against a 5 percent drop in revenue mainly attributed to reduced operations during the planned DXB runway closure in the first quarter, and the impact of flight and travel restrictions due to the Covid-19 pandemic in the fourth quarter. The Group's revenue reached $28.3 billion.
Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, chairman and chief executive, Emirates Airline and Group, said, "For the first 11 months of 2019-20, Emirates and dnata were performing strongly, and we were on track to deliver against our business targets. However, from mid-February things changed rapidly as the Covid-19 pandemic swept across the world, causing a sudden and tremendous drop in demand for international air travel as countries closed their borders and imposed stringent travel restrictions."
Commenting on the Covid-19 pandemic, he said it would have a huge impact on the 2020-21 performance of the company. "We expect it will take 18 months at least before travel demand returns to a semblance of normality."
Though Emirates' profit increased over the past year its total passenger and cargo capacity declined by 8 percent at the end of 2019-20, due to the Dubai Airport runway closure capacity restrictions and Covid-19 impact with a complete suspension of passenger services as directed by the UAE government during March 2020.
While Emirates recorded a very strong revenue performance during its 2nd and 3rd quarters of 2019-20, the DXB runway closure and Covid-19 crisis in the other quarters impacted its total revenue for the financial year with a decline of 6 percent to $25.1 billion.
The relative strengthening of the US dollar against currencies in many of Emirates' key markets had a $262 million negative impact on the airline's bottom line. Emirates SkyCargo freighter division of Emirates contributed to 13 percent of the airline's total transport revenue.
Emirates closed the financial year with a healthy level of $5.5 billion of cash assets.
Overall passenger traffic declined, as Emirates carried 56.2 million passengers (down 4 percent). With seat capacity down by 6 percent, the airline achieved a Passenger Seat Factor of 78.5 percent.
For 2019-20, dnata recorded a sharp profit decline (57 percent) to $168 million, though the total revenue grew to $4.0 billion, up 2 percent. This reflects its continued business growth particularly in its Catering division, and strong customer retention and new contract win across its four divisions. dnata's international business now accounts for 72 percent of its revenue.
Across its more than 120 subsidiaries, the Group's total workforce remained nearly unchanged with 105,730 employees, representing over 160 different nationalities.