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Aerodrom Ljubljana generated a net profit of more than EUR 5 million

Aerodrom Ljubljana, d.d. performed well in 2012, despite the adverse economic situation and the domestic airline’s problems. As traffic and the corresponding revenue declined, it succeeded in maintaining a high net profit of EUR 5,193 thousand.

Last year Aerodrom Ljubljana generated operating revenues of EUR 30,846 thousand, down 4.6% on the forecast in the annual plan and down 9.3% on the previous year. The main factor in the fall in revenues was the decline in traffic on the domestic market, as sales revenue on the foreign market was maintained at the same level as in 2011. Despite the decline in traffic, revenues from commercial services exceeded the forecast, and were down only slightly on 2011. The decline in operating revenues was largely compensated for by the effective management of operating expenses, which amounted to EUR 25,621 thousand, down just under 1% on the forecast in the plan and down 3% on the previous year.
EBIT was less than forecast at EUR 5,225 thousand, and down on the previous year. The adjustment on the expense side and an increase in finance income had a beneficial impact on net profit, which amounted to EUR 5,193 thousand, down 11.6% on the forecast, but only 1.2% lower than in 2011.    

These results represented good performance for Aerodrom Ljubljana, particularly in light of the general economic situation in Slovenia and further afield in Europe, and the sharp decline in the domestic airline’s traffic in 2012. Another major factor in performance was the limited possibility of adjusting costs to the fluctuating traffic, given that Aerodrom Ljubljana operates in a sector with high fixed costs incurred by providing infrastructure and ensuring that it functions without disruption and in meeting standards of safety and quality of service. There were nevertheless positive results from efforts to identify opportunities to increase revenues in services not strictly connected to aviation, which have proved to be an increasingly important element of revenue generation.

The volume of traffic was less than forecast in the plan, as airlines were unable to fully realise their own forecasts. The domestic airline carried significantly fewer passengers than planned (its passenger numbers were down 11% on the forecast), while the forecast increase in traffic on the foreign market (higher flight frequency, replacement of smaller aircraft with larger) was not fully realised, and in addition the scheduled service to Prague was suddenly withdrawn in June. Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport served 1,198,911 passengers in 2012, down 9.1% on the forecast in the plan and down 12.5% on the previous year. The decline in traffic in terms of aircraft movements was slightly smaller: at 35,019 the number was down 8.4% on the forecast and down 10.8% on 2011.

The contraction in economic activity in Europe had a profound impact on aviation in 2012. Airlines have streamlined their operations during the crisis by consolidating networks and cutting routes, the process hitting smaller airports with less market potential harder. Aerodrom Ljubljana was thus faced with numerous challenges in this area, but nevertheless succeeded in attracting a new airline and expanding the services offered by low-cost airlines (Wizz Air have been serving the airport since October).

The shortfall in cargo traffic relative to the forecast in the plan was less than that of passenger traffic (at 2.8% overall); it was down 13.4% on the previous year as a result of a loss of ship and road break-bulk cargo, truck cargo and mail, but air cargo tonnage was up on both the forecast and the 2011 figure.   

The uncertainty in the aviation sector meant that certain investments planned for last year were postponed until this year. Of the planned investments in buildings and equipment of EUR 13,108 thousand, only EUR 2,209 thousand was earmarked, all from internal resources.

Although no significant economic recovery can yet be expected in 2013, the trend of decline in total traffic at Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport has already come to an end, thanks to the pronounced growth in foreign airlines’ traffic in the first quarter. The forecast for passenger traffic in 2013 is positive, with a moderate recovery of 2.2% expected. Operating revenues and expenses will be down slightly on 2012, as will net profit. Investments in buildings and equipment totalling EUR 27,604 thousand have been planned for this year, the most important of which will be the initial construction of the new passenger terminal and the renovation of the old terminal. The investments are expected to be financed in full with internal resources.

Brnik, 19 April 2013