The number of passengers Turkish Airlines (THY) carried in May rose by 5% y/y to 5.9mn, following the 8% annual growth experienced in April, the company said on June 8 in a bourse filing.
THY’s year on year passenger figures shrank in the first three months of the year. However, the national flag carrier has now reported passenger growth in both April and May thanks to the start of the tourism season.
Across January-May, the number of passengers declined by 2% y/y to 25mn. Domestic passenger volume fell by 0.4% y/y to 11mn, while the international passenger figure declined 3% y/y to 14mn.
The load factor rose to 75.9% over the first five months of 2017 from 73.7% a year ago while the available seat kilometre (ASK) figure was down 3% y/y to 66bn.
The number of aircraft in the carrier’s fleet increased to 338 from 322 in May last year.
On May 29, Bloomberg cited unnamed sources in reporting that THY was seeking options to finance a move from its hub to Istanbul’s third airport, expected to go operational by the end of 2018.
The share price of THY suffered in March after the US and UK banned electronic devices larger than smartphones in hand luggage on flights from 10 airports in the Middle East and North Africa.
But THY’s North America passenger traffic rose by 2% y/y to 1.76mn in May despite the ban, according to the latest data. However, the number of North America passengers declined by 8% y/y to 7.1mn across January-May.
A sharp decline in foreign tourist visits as a result of anxiety over terror attacks in Turkey and tensions with Russia that led to charter flight restrictions also impacted THY during 2016. In June last year, 45 people lost their lives in an attack on Ataturk Airport blamed on Islamic State.
The number of passengers THY served increased by 2.3% to 62.8mn last year, easing from an average yearly gain of 17% between 2011 and 2015. The carrier posted a net loss of TRY47mn in 2016, its first loss in more than a decade.
The airline is targeting 69mn passengers - 32mn domestic and 27mn international - in 2017. Its revenue target for this year is $10.1bn.
|THY Financials (consolidated)|
|Total Shareholders' Equity||9.15||14.1||54%||17.9||27%|