Aer Lingus owner IAG eyes more jets as profits jump

IAG — owner of British Airways, Iberia, and Aer Lingus — said it is making progress in talks to add more wide-body jets in order to tap surging demand after profit across the group jumped 68% in 2015.

The group run by Willie Walsh formally took over Aer Lingus last August.

Since the acquisition, Aer Lingus has contributed €622m in revenues and €35m before exceptional costs in operating profit to the group.

The Aer Lingus yield — the amount of money earned per seat — had improved, driven by “a strong performance across the North Atlantic”, IAG said.

IAG is already renewing the fleet of its Iberia arm with Airbus A350 and A330 long-haul planes over the next five years.

Aer Lingus will also get two A330s and IAG is converting options for the re-engined A320neo model to be allocated between its carriers later.

It is establishing itself as Europe’s most profitable airline as Air France-KLM and Lufthansa grapple with unions over cost cuts.

Aer Lingus will provide a full year of earnings in 2016, while a potentially lucrative joint venture deal with Latam Airlines could spur profit from next year.

Mr Walsh said he is in detailed discussions with potential suppliers of used Boeing Co 777-300ER aircraft and is continuing to look at leasing a batch of A380 super jumbos. Group operating profit increased to €2.34bn from €1.39bn.

“It’s undoubtedly been a good year, but it’s also been challenging with extreme volatility in the currency and fuel markets,” said Mr Walsh.

“Overall, North America and Europe were the strongest markets.”

Full-year earnings were in line with IAG’s forecast for adjusted operating profit in the range of €2.25bn to €2.3bn.

© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved

Email Updates

Receive our lunchtime briefing straight to your inbox

More in this Section

Central Bank to reveal homes lost in tracker scandal

Warning of row over UK’s Brexit divorce bill

Teva Pharma plan risks 38 jobs but other plants safe

Regions cannot be left behind in drive for growth


Breaking Stories

Tourism Ireland welcomes 9% growth in spend by overseas visitors

ESRI: Construction activity powering strong growth; jobless numbers to fall to 5.6%

Soaring online sales help Ted Baker to increased profits of £61.3m

Next annual profits show first fall for eight years

Lifestyle

Donegal's Little Hours are getting ready to make a real splash on the music scene

Scene + Heard: Entertainment news round-up

Cillian Murphy had his eyes on the Free Fire target

Ask Audrey: 'I’m waiting for my mother to die because her house is worth €1.8 million.'

More From The Irish Examiner