Wizz Air faces ‘transition year’ as it posts £500m loss

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By Lisa James
Home » Wizz Air faces ‘transition year’ as it posts £500m loss

Wizz Air CEO Jozsef Varadi has promised post-COVID air travel will continue to be affordable, but warned the low-cost carrier’s recovery will be slower than expected.

The airline’s results for the 12 months to 31 March 2021 reveal a net loss of €576 million (£497 million), on a 75% passenger decrease.

Mr Varadi said the past year saw ‘passenger airlines around the world going into prolonged hibernation to survive whilst calling upon extensive financial support’.

He said the airline faces another ‘transition year’, warning: “Unless we see an accelerated and permanent lifting of restrictions, we expect a reported net loss in full-year 2022.”

The airline expects to fly around 30% of its pre-COVID capacity in the current first quarter and plans to return to full schedules in the 2022-23 financial year.

Mr Varadi said: “This said, Wizz Air proved to be very resilient during F21. Wizz Air entered the pandemic from a position of strength, with an investment grade balance sheet and strong liquidity position, with the lowest cost business model, and strength from its culture of entrepreneurship, agility and can-do mentality personified in each and every one of our employees.

“This not only allowed us to better weather the storm, but positioned Wizz Air for even bigger wins in the future.

“At Wizz Air, we believe that air travel provides opportunities that can enhance lives and make the world around us better, bringing people and businesses together.

“We’re committed to making sure that everyone, everywhere can benefit from air travel at the lowest possible prices, whilst setting high benchmarks for safety, customer experience and sustainability.

“With our ultra-low cost business model we will have the ability to take advantage of opportunities which may arise as competitors are withdrawing capacity.

“The strength of our balance sheet and fleet order allowed us to grow our footprint – even during this crisis. While doing so, we not only improved our odds for a faster recovery once restrictions lift, we also improved our structural cost.

“In total we increased our number of announced or operating bases from 25 pre-COVID-19 to 43 point in time.”

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