Qantas profit forecasts rise by $150 million after a tough year for travelers and airline boss Alan Joyce
Qantas profits soar after bosses fired workers, took money from taxpayers and pocketed huge bonuses for themselves
- The airline raises its profit expectations for the first half of the current financial year
- Qantas forecasts $1.35-$1.45 billion pre-tax gain, $150 million more than estimated
- The airline’s net debt is expected to fall between $2.3 and $2.5 billion by December 31
- Updated financial status is due to rising passenger travel demand
- 2022 marred by canned flights, poor customer service, lost luggage and delays
Qantas’ profit expectations are up $150 million in the first half of 2022-2023 after a tumultuous year plagued by layoffs, service delays and one of Australia’s worst businesses.
The ‘Flying Kangaroo’ cited strong post-Covid-19 passenger travel demand on Wednesday when the latest market update was released.
Qantas now forecasts underlying pre-tax profit of $1.35-$1.45 billion for the current half year ended December 31.
That’s one An increase of $150 million since the last earnings forecast in October, despite record high fuel prices and recent extreme weather as a fourth Covid wave looms.
Aviation chief Alan Joyce has confronted the recent backlash after it was revealed he will cash in $4 million in stock on top of his more than $2 million salary, despite travelers’ outcry over service disruptions.
Meanwhile, the airline received more than $2.35 billion from taxpayers to keep it afloat after lockdowns and border closures ground most of its fleet.
During that time, the airline also enacted a brutal cost-cutting plan that saw thousands of its employees laid off
The airline is desperate for an overhaul of its public image after recently receiving a ‘Shonky’ gong from consumer watchdog Choice.
Qantas has updated its earnings forecast for the first half of 2022-23 after a series of controversies (pictured a Qantas flight attendant helping travelers)
“Consumers continue to prioritize travel over other spending categories and there are signs that restrictions on international capacity are boosting domestic demand for leisure activities, benefiting Australian tourism,” the airline said.
Fuel costs are expected to reach $5 billion this financial year, which would be a record for the Qantas group, despite international capacity still being a third below pre-Covid levels.
The airline’s net debt is expected to fall between $2.3 and $2.5 billion by New Year’s Eve, $900 million better than forecast last month.
Staff are on track to reap the benefits of post-pandemic recovery with up to $11,000 in non-executive employee bonuses, the airline added.
Approximately 20,000 non-executive employees will receive a $5,000 bonus and up to 1,000 Qantas shares, subject to key conditions being met.
Qantas was ranked Australia’s most punctual domestic airline in October after a difficult year marred by canceled flights, poor customer service, lost luggage and frequent delays.
Qantas’ profit expectations are up $150 million since October on traveler demand (pictured, passenger queues at Sydney Airport)
Qantas CEO Alan Joyce will pocket $4 million in shares on top of his more than $2 million salary
Flight cancellation rates fell to 1.2 percent last month, compared to competitor Virgin Australia, which threw out 3.6 percent.
Qantas is also plagued by cabin crew union action over a new agreement.
The airline giant is confident it will maintain its top spot during the peak season over the Christmas period, after a $200 million investment provided stability.
“The investment in scheduling additional staff, ongoing recruitment and reserve aircraft will help maintain these levels during the latest wave of Covid infections in the community and through the busy Christmas period, and will also mitigate the impact of extreme weather (especially wind) in November,” Qantas added.
Shares of Qantas rose 6.1 percent to $6,225 after Wednesday’s announcement, their highest level since February 2020, when the pandemic first hit Australia’s shores.
Mr Joyce recently revealed that Qantas was weeks away from bankruptcy as Australia’s borders slammed shut and the country was plunged into lockdown.
Qantas has poured $200 million into drafting and recruiting additional staff and spare aircraft ahead of the busy Christmas period (pictured, passengers at Sydney Airport)
After months of regular flight delays, Qantas was ranked Australia’s most punctual domestic airline last month