Norwegian Air's April passenger income beats expectations

Airline was hit by uncertainty due to SAS strike, grounding of Boeing 737 MAX jets

A Boeing  787 Dreamliner, operated by Norwegian Air, sits on the tarmac at Charles de Gaulle airport. Photograph: Marlene Awaad/Bloomberg

A Boeing 787 Dreamliner, operated by Norwegian Air, sits on the tarmac at Charles de Gaulle airport. Photograph: Marlene Awaad/Bloomberg

 

Norwegian Air filled more seats on its planes and earned higher revenues per customer in April, while dealing with the grounding of its 18 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft, it said, sending the company’s shares sharply higher in early trade.

The company said last month that the global grounding of 737 MAX jets, which followed deadly crashes of airliners in Indonesia and Ethiopia, could scupper Norwegian’s plan to return to profitability this year.

Norwegian’s load factor, the percentage of seats sold, rose to 86.1 per cent from 83 per cent a year earlier, beating an analyst forecast of 85.9 per cent.

Yield, a measure of revenue per passenger carried and kilometres flown, rose to 0.41 Norwegian crowns ($0.0471) from 0.33 crowns in March, topping the 0.38 crowns expected by analysts.

Norwegian’s shares rose 9 per cent in early trade and were up 5 per cent at 2pm.

Norwegian has curbed its rapid growth this year to focus on cutting costs and turning a profit. It also raised NKr3 billion from shareholders to boost its balance sheet. – Reuters