Singapore Airlines reported a higher operating profit for its first quarter, as group revenue rose 5.6 percent.
Total revenue for the quarter to end June came in at SGD$3.86 billion, from the previous year period’s SGD$3.66 billion. Operating costs rose 3.4 percent to SGD$3.58 billion, resulting in an operating profit of SGD$280.8 million.
The full service Singapore Airlines contributed SGD$241 million of the operating profit, but regional carrier SilkAir and budget brands Tigerair and Scoot only managed a SGD$10 million contribution to profits between them.
SIA Cargo made a SGD$6 million operating profit on higher revenue as it carried more freight during the period.
Net profit fell in comparison to 1Q16 as last year included proceeds of the sale of the airline’s stake in Hong Kong Aero Engine Services. Q1 net profit came in at SGD$235 million, down SGD$22 million from last year.
Group airlines carried 8.14 million passengers in the quarter, a 6.6 percent increase from the previous year. RPK (revenue passenger km) passenger traffic was up 7.6 percent on an ASK capacity increase of 2.8 percent. The resulting load factor was 80.2 percent, a 3.6 percentage point increase. Passenger yield fell 3.1 percent.
The airline said the outlook for the airline industry remains challenging, with global economic uncertainty and geopolitical concerns plus over-capacity continuing to dampen yields.
SIA put four additional Airbus A350s into service during the quarter and removed an A380 and an A330 in preparation for end of lease return. Scoot took delivery of two 787-8s, adding to the 12 Dreamliners already in service.
During the quarter, SIA completed the integration of low cost units Scoot and Tigerair, with both now operating under the Scoot brand name.