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Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 17 November 2018

Airbus A350 jetliner delays push Finnair’s profit below expectations

The Scandinavian state-owned airline saw annula profit double but quarterly earnings missing forecasts as it is left waiting for new jetliners.
A Finnair jetliner lands at the Helsinki-Vantaa International Airport in Helsinki. Jussi Nukari / AFP
A Finnair jetliner lands at the Helsinki-Vantaa International Airport in Helsinki. Jussi Nukari / AFP

Finland’s state-controlled airline Finnair reported on Wednesday a smaller than expected quarterly profit due to delays in the deliveries of its new A350 jets.

Finnair, which uses its Helsinki hub to take Asian travellers to European destinations, reported fourth-quarter core operating profit of €1.6 million (Dh6.21m), missing analysts’ average forecast of €6.8m in a Reuters poll.

Annual profit more than doubled to €55m due to new capacity, and the company proposed a dividend of €0.1 per share – its first pay-out since 2013.

Finnair said delays in plane maker Airbus’ A350 deliveries last year forced the Finnish company to “wet lease” aircraft and crews from other airliners in expensive arrangements.

Finnair has struggled in recent years with tough competition from discount carriers, but cost savings and a focus on Asia helped it back to growth.

Finnair did not give a profit guidance for 2017 but said its sales and capacity were set to grow.

“The demand outlook for passenger and cargo traffic in Finnair’s main markets continues to involve uncertainty,” it added.

* Reuters

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