AIR SEYCHELLES PROFITS NEARLY TRIPLE AS RECOVERY TURNS INTO SUSTAINED GROWTH
(Posted 10th April 2014)
Air Seychelles has just announced another profitable year, with net profits up from last year’s 1 million US Dollars to 3 million US Dollars in the just ended financial year.
This represents a rise of 171 percent, outpacing revenue growth which went up on a year by year basis by 107 percent to 88.7 million US Dollars. Passenger numbers were given as 352.474 across the international and domestic routes, also a significant rise compared to past years. All travelers on Air Seychelles can now enjoy the recent Skytrax rating which has gone up to 4 stars, making Air Seychelles one of Africa’s two top airlines.
Cargo tonnage uplifted to the archipelago rose by 159 percent to 5.529 tons.
This remarkable turnaround, initiated under the close partnership with Abu Dhabi’s national airline, which brought Air Seychelles major savings vis a vis training, purchasing, aircraft maintenance and other synergy areas, is now continuing into the third year since Etihad acquired a 40 percent stake.
Air Seychelles presently operates a fleet of two Airbus A330-200 aircraft, flying 16 international services per week from Mahe and is expecting delivery of a new Airbus A320 later this year, which will then be deployed on regional routes to for instance Mauritius and other yet to be named destinations. Three brand new Twin Otter DHC 6-400 will begin the join the domestic fleet this coming June, and replace ageing models of the original DHC 6-300 series, also contributing to major fuel savings as the change of the long haul fleet from the B767-300 to the Airbus A330 already made happen. The airline now employs 629 staff, an increase in 2013 of 17 percent of which were 57 new cabin crew. From within the airline’s domestic services were 8 pilots promoted to fly on the Airbus A330 while two domestic first officers were promoted to the rank of captain.
Code share operations, with now 5 airlines including partner Etihad, Air Berlin, Czech Airlines, South African Airways and Cathay Pacific, have contributed significantly to the improved financial results by adding passenger numbers and increasing connectivity to key markets where Seychelles’ tourists come from.
The airline’s Chairman of the Board, who is also the Seychelles Minister for Home Affairs and Transport, Joel Morgan, commented on the just released results: ‘To record a second successive year of profitability after the immense challenges of the past is an achievement of which we are all very proud. Our 2013 figures are a clear indication that we now have the right business model.In just two years, we have rebuilt our national carrier, strengthened our partnership with Etihad Airways, and beyond delivering good results for the airline, we have helped grow Seychelles tourism in the process one of our core objectives. Today Air Seychelles is a great symbol of our nation wherever our brightly-coloured aircraft are flown. We have come a long way in two years and 2013 has been exceptional. To achieve a second year of profitability and simultaneously be ranked among the very best airlines in the world is an amazing achievement of which the company and its staff should be very proud. People are the most valuable asset in any organisation. This is true for Air Seychelles as well, and reflected in our commitment to developing a highly-skilled national workforce and a long-term succession plan. In particular I am pleased at the significant progress made with our people development program, where the first group of Air Seychelles Graduate Development Management trainees are scheduled to return to Seychelles later this year after 18 months abroad receiving world-class training’.
Air Seychelles new CEO Manoj Papa, in response, added: ‘These results are another step forward in our journey as a commercially successful business and come against a backdrop of impressive development in both our domestic and international operations.Our business is now in good shape for the future, which includes growing our operations, launching new routes, taking delivery of new aircraft, expanding airline partnerships, hiring more Seychellois, and bringing more travellers to the Seychelles.We have established a solid basis for continued growth which reinforces the future of Air Seychelles and its vital contribution to the Seychelles economy’.
(Seen here from the left are Kevin Knight, Vice Chairman of Air Seychelles, Minister Joel Morgan, Chairman of Air Seychelles in the middle and on his right Mr. Manoj Papa, CEO of Air Seychelles after making the announcements)