Singapore Airlines Ltd. returned to a profit in Q1 after a surprise loss in the last quarter, helped by a surge in the number of passengers and a recovery in the air cargo market which saw its Singapore Airlines (SIA) Cargo unit swing to a SGD6 million (USD4.42 million) profit.
The main Singapore Air brand and all other divisions, including the budget-carrier unit, the cargo unit and an engineering company, all posted a profit at the operating level in the three months ended June, helping achieve a net income of SGD235.1 million (USD173.2 million), according to a stock exchange statement. The airline posted a loss in the three months ended March, the first in three years.
Singapore Airlines (SIA) Cargo swung to a SGD6 million profit in the first quarter from a SGD34 million loss a year earlier as cargo volumes grew and yields improved, up 4.8 per cent in Q1.
“The business outlook for the airline industry remains challenging as the uncertain global economic climate and geopolitical concerns, coupled with overcapacity in our key markets, continue to dampen yield performance,” the airline said in the statement.
During the quarter, SIA completed the integration of low cost units Scoot and Tigerair, with both now operating under the Scoot brand name. SIA put four additional Airbus A350s into service during the quarter and removed an A380 and an A330 in preparation for end of lease return. Scoot took delivery of two B787-8s, adding to the 12 Dreamliners already in service.
The carrier added: “The group’s transformation programme is also ongoing, to identify new opportunities for revenue generation, and to restructure its cost base.” As part of this programme, it was announced at the end of the last quarter that SIA Cargo would be reabsorbed back into the main airline group.