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Etihad posts soaring net profit and anticipates IPO 

Etihad crew catered to 14 million passengers in 2023, resulting in a 31 percent rise in passenger revenue to AED16.6 billion women cabin crew Etihad airline smiling Etihad
Etihad crew catered to 14 million passengers in 2023, resulting in a 31 percent rise in passenger revenue to AED16.6 billion
  • Airline posts $5.5bn revenue
  • CEO aiming for IPO
  • Total passenger load up 40%

Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Airways grew its net profit more than fivefold to AED525 million ($143 million) in 2023, helped by a 40 percent increase in passengers and AED20.3 billion ($5.5 billion) of revenues.

The emirate’s state-owned airline gave staff a heads-up about its 2023 financial performance in an internal memo sent on January 25, AGBI reported last month. 

On Wednesday March 6, Etihad made its first public financial statement since July 2022, when former chief executive Tony Douglas revealed a “record-breaking” first-half core operating profit of $296 million following a previous decline in its performance caused by a company-wide restructuring and the pandemic.

In today’s statement, Etihad reported an 11 percent annual increase in revenues for the year ended December 31 2023, up from AED18.3 billion ($5 billion) in 2022. Net profit jumped more than 400 percent from AED92 million, excluding a pandemic-related government grant, it said. 

The airline carried 14 million passengers, resulting in a 31 percent rise in passenger revenue to AED16.6 billion. Passenger load factor, which measures how efficiently an airline is filling available seats, rose to 86 percent, from 82 percent in 2022.

It said its net debt-to-earnings ratio improved to 2.5, from 5 in 2022, on the back of “strong cash flow generation and controlled capex”.

Etihad launched 15 new destinations last year, including Lisbon, Copenhagen, Kolkata and Osaka, and increased the size of its operating fleet by 14 aircraft. 

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Antonoaldo Neves, CEO of Etihad, said the company is preparing for an IPO

The company is also considering a potential initial public offering, chief executive Antonoaldo Neves told Reuters: “We are working very hard so that whenever is the proper time to do an IPO, we are going to be ready.” 

Neves led Brazilian carrier Azul through a dual listing in São Paulo and New York in 2017.

The chief executive, who took over from Tony Douglas in November 2022, said in today’s statement: “Following our strong performance in 2023… our task at hand is to further strengthen our business as we continue our growth strategy and pursue further margin expansion opportunities.”

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