Norwegian swings to an operating profit of $40.9 million in the first quarter

Norwegian Air Shuttle ( (Oslo) issued the following statement (translated from Norwegian):

Norwegian has announced a quarterly profit before tax of 238 million Norwegian crowns ($40.9 million). This is better than last year and one of its best first quarter results. The quarter was characterized by good traffic growth and international expansion and a substantial reduction of costs which strengthens the company’s competitive position in an industry with fierce competition.

Norwegian had sales of 2.9 billion Norwegian kroner in the first quarter, an increase of 23 percent compared with the same period last year. Earnings before tax (EBT) ranked -160 million NOK, SEK 238 million compared to the first quarter of 2012. 3.9 million passengers flew with the airline, which is a traffic growth of 8 per cent in terms of number of passengers. The traffic growth (RPK) was much higher, 19 percent, which is also linked to each Norwegian passengers now fly much longer distances than they did a year ago.

The figures also show a strong growth in production, an increase of 21 percent (ASK). The load factor for the first quarter was 76 percent, down one percentage point compared to the same quarter last year.

During the first quarter decreased cost (CASK) of 8 percent, both including and excluding fuel. Cost cuts explained by the establishment of new European bases and that the company will phase in a growing number of brand new Boeing 737-800’s, including 6 aircraft already delivered this year. April 1 opened Norwegian a new base at Gatwick in London, where the company until now launched 14 direct routes, including a number of popular Mediterranean destinations. Norwegian also opened a new base in Alicante in late March.

Norwegian’s overall production growth is expected to be over 25 percent in 2013 based on the company is phasing in new aircraft, launch more new routes and start to fly long-haul routes from late May / early June.

“We are very pleased with the results for the first quarter and that, in a seasonally weak quarter for many airlines, made a profit of 238 million kronor. The load factor was stable despite strong output growth. At the same time we reduce our costs significantly, which is absolutely critical to be a competitive player in the international industry. It is also gratifying that our growth is creating new jobs in several markets, including outside Scandinavia. Our strategy regarding cost reduction and international expansion is also the most important thing we can do to secure the many jobs we all have already created in Scandinavia”, said Norwegian’s CEO Bjorn Kjos.

Top Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best. Norwegian Air Shuttle ( Boeing 737-81D WL LN-NOR (msn 39412) (Povel Ramel) arrives at London (Gatwick).

Norwegian: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Norwegian. Another view of LN-NOR in scenic Norway. 737-800 WL LN-NOR (02-Povel Ramel)(Grd)(Norwegian)(LRW)