ECONOMY

Aegean swings back to profit in 2021

Aegean swings back to profit in 2021

Greece’s largest carrier Aegean Airlines swung to a net profit in 2021, after losses in the previous year, as passenger traffic recovered from pandemic travel restrictions.

Aegean, a member of the Star Alliance airlines group, said on Wednesday it made net earnings of 5.1 million euros last year, compared with a loss of €227.9 million in 2020.

Sales rose 63% to €674.8 million.

Chief Executive Dimitris Gerogiannis said the pandemic had a significant impact last year, and the recovery in passenger traffic mainly took place in June-to-October, as it was interrupted by the emergence of the Omicron variant in November.

“In 2022 the sector expects a significant rebound and demand for Greece’s tourism product looks particularly strong. At the same time though, Russia’s invasion in Ukraine caused new uncertainties, seriously impacting the cost of fuel,” he said.

The airline flew 7.19 million passengers last year, up 39% from 2020, with its load factor – a key industry measure of filled seats – easing to 65.5% from 67.4% in 2020.

The company’s cash reserves at the end of December stood at €474.4 million, the airline said. [Reuters]