EUROPE & CIS: AF-KLM posts narrower loss than expected

Air France-KLM posted a narrower than expected fourth quarter loss this week after capping staff costs and cutting capacity as it awaits for elusive signs of a recovering in passenger andcargo traffic. Europe’s largest airline by revenue reported a fiscal fourth quarter net loss of €505 million (US$698.3 million) and a full-year net loss of […]


Air France-KLM posted a narrower than expected fourth quarter loss this week after capping staff costs and cutting capacity as it awaits for elusive signs of a recovering in passenger andcargo traffic.

Europe’s largest airline by revenue reported a fiscal fourth quarter net loss of €505 million (US$698.3 million) and a full-year net loss of €814 million compared with a €1.4 billion full year profit a year earlier, as a result of the ongoing global economic crisis.

The group’s cargo division posted an operating loss of €206.8 million (US$286 million) in cargo revenue for its 2008/2009 financial year compared to a profit of €42 million in the previous 12 months.

Excluding Martinair, which became a wholly-owned KLM subsidiary at the end of 2008, total cargo revenue for the group was €2.8 billion – a drop of 2.4 per cent over the previous period.

Cargo contributed 14.9 per cent of Air France-KLM total airline revenue in the 12 month period to March 31 – down from 15.2 percent the previous year.

But chief executive Pierre-Henri Gourgeon said there were some signs that the declining traffic may have bottomed out. “Since 6 to 8 weeks ago we have seen some stabilisation of the crisis in passenger and cargo, but no sign of recovery yet,” Gourgeon said.