2 MARCH 2020
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A €200m fall in operating profit for 2019 was reported by British Airways’ parent company IAG last week with the future outlook also clouded as the coronavirus outbreak continues to affect operations.
The profits fall was 5.7%, to €3.3bn from €3.5bn in 2018, slightly ahead of IAG’s forecast in September, when it said a strike by pilots would result in a €215m downturn.
Total revenue for 2019 however rose by 5.1% to €25.5bn, compared with €24.3bn in 2018 with IAG CEO Willie Walsh hailing the figures as “a good result in a year affected by disruption and higher fuel prices”.
On future outlook, Walsh, who leaves the CEO post later this month and retires on 30 June, said he believed the impact of coronavirus on the airline industry could “push some failing airlines over the edge”.
However, he added: “We (IAG) are well able to adjust to this situation because our business is in great shape. IAG is resilient with a strong balance sheet and substantial cash liquidity to withstand the current weakness.
“We have a management team experienced in similar situations and have demonstrated that we can respond quickly to changing market conditions. We are strongly positioned for the expected recovery in demand.”
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