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Aerodrom Ljubljana’s performance in first quarter of 2013 better than forecast

After it had been discussed by the Supervisory Board, Aerodrom Ljubljana, d.d. yesterday released the company’s interim report on its performance in the first quarter of 2013. The traffic generated by foreign airlines was up compared with the same period last year, while the domestic airline recorded a fall in passenger numbers on scheduled services, but an increase in charter traffic. Cargo tonnage recorded significant growth. Net profit was 1.5 times larger than that generated in the same period last year, and was four times larger than forecast in the plan.

Aerodrom Ljubljana performed better than in the first quarter of last year, and also better than forecast. Operating revenues were up 9.3% on the forecast at EUR 6,729 thousand, and up 3.3% on the first quarter of last year. This positive trend would have been even larger had the revenue generated in the first quarter of last year (a leap year) not included the revenue generated on the extra day (29 February 2012). Operating revenues would have been up 4.2% on the same period last year in this instance. The increase in operating revenues was primarily a reflection of an increase in revenue on foreign markets, which was up 7.4% on the same period last year, and up 22.2% on the forecast. Further opportunities for growth in operating revenues are evident in commercial revenues, which were up almost 2% on the same period last year and up 6.6% on the forecast, primarily as a result of an increase in revenue from warehousing and advertising services. Another positive factor in performance in the first quarter was the control of operating expenses, which were down 4.6% on the same period last year at EUR 6,117 thousand, at the level of the forecast. The increased revenue and the cost controls were reflected in an increase in EBIT, which amounted to EUR 612 thousand in the first quarter of this year, up more than EUR 500 thousand on the same period last year and on the forecast. The higher-than-forecast finance income and lower-than-forecast finance expenses resulted in a pre-tax profit (EUR 966 thousand) and net profit (EUR 813 thousand) that were 1.5 times in excess of the figures recorded in the first quarter of last year, and four times in excess of the forecasts. The two figures were equivalent to 16.3% of the forecasts in the annual plan, a relatively high proportion given the seasonal component of the company’s business.

During the first quarter Aerodrom Ljubljana focused on strengthening cooperation with existing airlines and engaging in discussions with new foreign airlines. This brought a 6.9% rise in foreign airlines’ passenger numbers compared with the first quarter of last year, primarily as a result of a rise in the passenger numbers of Turkish Airlines and Montenegro Airlines, and of low-cost airline Wizz Air, which did not serve Ljubljana Airport in the same period last year. The last led to a significant increase in the percentage of public transport passengers carried by low-cost airlines, which was up 4.6 percentage points on the same period last year at 16.2%. The domestic airline’s passenger numbers were down 6.2% on the same period last year, primarily as a result of a decline in traffic on scheduled services, its charter services having recorded a rise of 21.5% in passenger numbers compared with the same period last year. Total passenger numbers were thus at the same level as last year, and were at the forecast level. Here it should be noted that total passenger numbers would have been up 1.4% on the first quarter of last year had 2012 not been a leap year. The number of aircraft movements was down 3.1% on the same period last year, and down 9% on the forecast, but the negative impact of the decline was mitigated by a significant portion of the services that the company provides being dependent on aircraft weight. There was significant growth in the cargo segment despite the adverse economic situation: cargo tonnage stood at 4,374 tonnes, up 9.8% on the same period last year and up 14.2% on the forecast. All categories of cargo recorded an increase.

Given the trends in traffic in the first quarter, and particularly later (in April and May), and in light of the available figures for its performance, the company expects its performance in the second quarter of the year to be in line with the forecast.

The passenger numbers of the domestic airline and foreign airlines in April and May were up on the same period last year, as forecast in the plan. The trend of using larger, heavier aircraft is expected to continue, as a result of which the number of aircraft movements is down slightly on last year and on the forecast, although the negative impact is partly being mitigated by the use of heavier aircraft, as a significant portion of our services are dependent on aircraft weight.

Zg. Brnik, 24 May 2013