NEW DELHI: SpiceJet’s Q3 profit has plunged 77% to Rs 55.1 crore, from Rs 240 crore in same period last fiscal due to “record high cost”. The airline said an increase of 34% in crude oil prices and 11% depreciation of the rupee against the dollar together pushed up the cost by Rs 329 crore, which was partially offset by a “strong 8% increase in passenger yields” (read fares). The airline’s scrip closed 2.4% up BSE Monday at Rs 80.30.

For the same factors, IndiGo’s net profit had slumped to Rs 191 crore this Q3, down 75% from 762 crore in the same period last fiscal. Crisis-ridden , the third listed airline, will declare its Q3 result this Thursday.

However, feels the macro environment has improved substantially with India remaining the world’s fastest growing aviation market and crude prices remaining steady in the range of $60-65/barrel as against a peak of $80-85/barrel in the previous two quarters.

SpiceJet CMD Ajay Singh said: “Despite the huge cost escalation in ATF and exchange rate, SpiceJet has done remarkably well thanks to our superior revenue performance, tight control on other costs and the continued confidence our passengers have shown in the airline. With a strong improvement in the macro cost environment and the increasing induction of the fuel efficient () MAX aircraft, the outlook looks stronger than it has over the past year.”

“We continue to pursue our ambitious growth plans religiously as we to introduce new maiden flights, lead the government’s initiative, add new aircraft and explore newer growth avenues while keeping our costs under check. With sector headwinds having subsided, we are bullish on our future prospects and will continue to invest aggressively in creating capacity in line with our forecasts. The new generation 737MAX aircraft with its cost efficiencies and increased revenue opportunities (due to superior payload performance) will become a substantial portion of our Boeing fleet further improving our margins. The increased seating capacity on the Bombardier Q400s will also result in improved margins,” Singh said.

SpiceJet’s total income in the quarter ended December 31, 2018, was Rs 2,530.8, against Rs 2,096.1 crore in the same quarter last year. Expenses this Q3 were Rs 2,475.8 crore, opposed to Rs 1,856.1 crore in same period last fiscal.

Between October and December 2018, SpiceJet added 12 new planes, nine 8 aircraft and three Q400s, taking the fleet size stood to 74 —37 B737, 10 B737 MAX, 26 Q400s and one B737 freighter. It has seven Boeing MAX and one 737 freighter lined up for inductions during the last quarter of this financial year. SpiceJet operates 23 daily flights under the UDAN regional connectivity scheme.


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