LONDON – Loganair has announced this week that it has returned to profitability as its recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic continues onwards.
For the financial year to March 31, 2022, the carrier reported a profit before tax of £4.98 million, based on a reported turnover of £161 million.
This is a significant improvement from the last two years of losses due to the pandemic.
In the same financial year, Loganair became the UK’s third busiest airline behind British Airways and easyJet when measured by the number of flights operated.
More than 910,000 passengers have been handled, with the airline experiencing the busiest Summer season it has had up to now.
Loganair has also been expanding on the cargo front too, with the carrier securing a new long-term, five-year contract with Royal Mail back in February 2022.
The carrier has added four ATR72-500 Freighter aircraft to replace the Saab 340 Freighters as part of a wider fleet renewal program.
Commenting on the strong performance was Loganair’s CEO, Jonathan Hinkles:
“The efforts of every member of Loganair’s team throughout the pandemic, and the diversified nature of our business, have enabled the airline to return to profitability far sooner than many of our UK airline industry peers.”
“It has, without doubt, been an incredibly tough two years. Even so, our trading results, strengthening the balance sheet, and our comprehensive GreenSkies environment program means that we are wholly confident that Loganair is now in the strongest position of any UK regional airline to weather incoming storms affecting the wider economy.”
Hinkles also added on to the fact that the airline has fully repaid the UK Government-backed CLBILS loan taken out by the carrier to provide financial stability during COVID:
“Together with the unstinting support of our staff and our owners, our relationship with Clydesdale Bank / Virgin Money has played an essential part in Loganair’s longevity and prosperity, never more so than during the Covid-19 pandemic. We’re delighted that this long-standing arrangement is set to continue.”
More Attractive For Sale?
The strong results do make Loganair a more attractive business to purchase. Earlier this month, it was announced the carrier is to be sold by the Bond Brothers.
Arrowpoint Advisory has been appointed to seek potential buyers for the airline. The two Bond brothers, now 72 and 61 years old, respectively, have owned Loganair for the past quarter century and have developed it into the UK’s largest regional airline operator.
Peter Simpson, Loganair chairman told The Sunday Times, “It’s been a success story in terms of where we’ve got to, and the shareholders now feel it’s the right time to pass the baton onto new owners.”
In recalling the success of the operation, he observed: “One of the benefits we’ve had is to be small enough to be fleet of foot — where opportunities come up, we’ve worked very quickly to move into them.”
In spite of this, it is reported that some analysts have speculated that the airline will be placed for sale at the lower end of the scale based on its relatively low margins and given the prevailing environment of uncertainty surrounding many domestic airlines.
Even so, the airline has done well to turn around its financial situation, and whoever takes the airline on will have a nice headstart to profitability in the future.