Air Astana Posts Impressive $69M Profit Alongside Record Passenger Numbers

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Summary

  • Air Astana reports strong financial performance, with revenue up 13.8% to $1.3bn in 2023.
  • With costs growing, the airline saw a decrease in operating profit and profit after tax.
  • Air Astana experienced international growth by adding new routes after exiting Ukraine and Russia.

After listing on three stock exchanges earlier this year, Air Astana has revealed another year of huge profits after carrying a record number of passengers. The Kazakh flag carrier revealed that it had an operating profit of $136.0 million, which shrank to $68.7 million after tax.

Air Astana Tile

Air Astana

IATA/ICAO Code

KC/KZR

Year Founded

2002

CEO

Peter Foster

Unlike many international airlines, Air Astana only suffered one year of losses during the COVID-19 pandemic. 2020 saw a loss of -$93.9 million. In part by capitalizing on a previously untapped market within Kazakhstan, the airline already returned to a profit of $36.2 million in 2021. Summing 2023 up in one sentence, Group CEO Peter Foster said,

“Air Astana delivered another strong year of growth in 2023 with record passenger numbers and increased capacity.”

2023 in numbers

In 2023 Air Astana saw its revenue jump by 13.8% from $1.0bn in 2022 to $1.3bn. Unfortunately, the airline also saw costs grow slighty more than revenue. This means that the operating profit and profit after tax bost saw a decrease year over year. Operating profit fell from $148.7 million in 2022 to $136.0 million, while profit after tax fell from $78.4 million to $68.7 million. This is still the airline’s second largest profit by a big margin according to data from ch-aviation,

2018

2019

2020

2021

2022

2023

Net Profit

$5.4m

$30.0m

-$93.9m

$36.2m

$78.4m

$68.7m

Air Astana 2

Photo: Air Astana

Air Astana see international growth

Air Astana revealed that it has seen significant growth on international routes to and from Kazakhstan in 2023. This is depsite the carrier exiting both Ukraine and Russia in 2022 as the current onflict broke out. The Kazakh carrier has leveraged this capacity elsewhere, with routes to Georgia, Greece, Montenegro, Thailand, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, and Uzbekistan being added to the network. The carrier saw its international ASKs rise by 15.5% while domestic ASKs only rose 5.9%.

ASK stands for Available Seat Kilometers. It is a measure of the total capacity offered by an airline and is calculated by the number of seats offered, buy the length of the route. If an airplane had 100 seats and flew 800km, the ASKs would be 100×800=80,000.

Air Astana 3

Photo: Air Astana

Well placed to mitigate P&W impact

Last summer Air Astana’s CEO Peter Foster compared the Pratt & Whitney engine issues to a chronic illness while speaking to Simple Flying. The good news is that the carrier reports that it is well positioned to to mitigate the operational impact of remaining engine recalls. It currently has 28 aircraft equipted with the affected engines, and 32 engine removals scheduled.

Related


Air Astana CEO: Pratt & Whitney Issues Have Become “A Chronic Illness”

Although the airline only has two A320neos on the ground at present, things could change very rapidly.

The airline already has five replacement engines, and is expecting another three throughout 2024. Two of theses will be leased, while the third has been purchased by Air Astana. The carrier is also “resting” some engines to manage the number of remaining cycles, while also aquiring new aircraft, and looking at additional A320ceo capacity. On the issue, Air Astana remarked,

“Looking forward, the Company is pleased to note that it is at a very advanced stage in positive negotiations for an agreement with Pratt & Whitney that will provide compensation and other support to the Company for the impact to its operations arising from the GTF neo engine availability issues.”

What do you make of Air Astana’s 2023 annual results? Let us know what you think and why in the comments below!



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