8 NOVEMBER 2021
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It likes to call itself “Scotland’s Airline.” Loganair will celebrate its 60th birthday on 1 February 2022.
Now the UK’s largest regional airline it was one of a few to fly every day throughout the pandemic, with its efforts ensuring that essential travel needs for communities in the Scottish islands, the Isle of Man and Northern Ireland were never interrupted. Additionally, two of Loganair’s aircraft were converted to become air ambulances to support the Scottish Ambulance Service, and its dedicated freighter aircraft flew nightly trips to carry Covid-19 test kits.
Loganair’s scheduled service activities were severely restricted due the impact of the pandemic and the airline’s passenger numbers fell from 1.05m in 2019/20 to 252,259 in 2020/21, and its turnover more than halved from £169m to £81m. In each case, these are lesser reductions than those reported by other UK airlines.
A combination of careful cost controls and flexibility to rapidly change its business model in the face of the pandemic has led the airline to report a much-reduced pre-tax loss of £5.6m for the year, in comparison to the £12.7m loss before tax reported in 2019/20. Underlying pre-tax trading loss for the year was £1.2m.
Commenting on the results Chief Executive, Jonathan Hinkles, said: “Without doubt, the last year has been the most challenging in Loganair’s 59-year history. The fact that we’ve been able to weather the storm is entirely thanks to the dedication and commitment of our people. We are incredibly grateful to all of them – and their contribution means that we believe Loganair is in the strongest position of any UK regional airline as we emerge from the pandemic.”
From 1 September 2021, all Loganair employees returned to full pay; its recognised unions have welcomed Loganair being the first major UK airline to achieve this milestone.
In July 2020, Loganair entered into a new Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS) facility of up to £25m with Clydesdale Bank and its private British owners committing a separate package of support of £11m over two years. The airline’s cash balance at 31 March 2021 was £19.5m.
“Over the last 18 months, we’ve seen an amazing team effort to make sure that Loganair not only kept flying, but is now well positioned as life gets back to normal after Covid-19,” said Jonathan Hinkles. “We’re cautiously optimistic about the future; although we’ll still see challenges including reduced demand for business travel and concerns about aviation’s impact on the environment, we are confident that we can comprehensively address these with the same agility and team spirit which has served us so incredibly well throughout the pandemic.”
All comments are filtered to exclude any excesses but the Editor does not have to agree with what is being said. 100 words maximum
John Richmond, LLochwinnochUnited Kingdom
Loganair is a great credit to Scotland and the U.K.