Cebu Pacific profits surge by 143 per cent in first nine months

The operator of Philippine budget airline Cebu Pacific reported a 143 per cent surge in net income in the first nine months of this year as earnings were lifted by strong passenger bookings and stable costs.

Cebu Air Inc, a subsidiary of the Gokongwei family’s JG Summit Holdings, said on Tuesday that net income from January to September hit 6.75 billion pesos ($133 million) versus 2.78 billion pesos during the same period last year.


Ramping up capacity

Cebu Air has been ramping up capacity to meet rising demand for air travel, the firm said. Passenger revenue during the nine-month period went up 17.9 per cent to 46.6 billion pesos. Some 16.7 million flyers used Cebu Air during the period, representing a growth of 10.4 per cent.

Moreover, average fares went up 6.7 per cent to 2,794 pesos, the budget airline said. Other revenue sources such as cargo and ancillary also went up 5.3 per cent and 22.2 per cent, respectively.

Overall, Cebu Air’s revenue increased 17.7 per cent to 63.62 billion pesos.

Cebu Air said expenses were mostly kept in check during the period. Operating expenses increased 7.8 per cent to 53.81 billion pesos, in line with expanded operations.

Flying operations alone went up 2.5 per cent to 22.56 billion pesos. Cebu Air said this was mainly due to pilot training costs as it took delivery of new planes. Fuel expenses also dropped 1.4 per cent or 260.67 million pesos during the period.


Net loss

For the third quarter alone, Cebu Air posted a net loss of 384.3 million pesos, narrower than the previous year’s loss of 518.43 million pesos. Revenue of 18.92 billion pesos, up 16.7 per cent, alongside stable operating costs helped lower losses during the third quarter of this year.

Cebu Air ended September with 72 planes. Its fleet was comprised of 31 Airbus A320, seven Airbus A321 CEO, three Airbus A320 NEO, two Airbus A321 NEO, eight Airbus A330, eight ATR 72-500 and 13 ATR 72-600.

Its network spanned 80 domestic routes and 41 international routes with a total of 2,727 scheduled weekly flights.