easyJet ramps up profit forecast after posting strong results

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Low-cost airline upgraded its profit outlook on Thursday, after posting strong results for the third quarter of its financial year thanks to keeping a tight grip on costs.

The company said that it now expects profit before tax for the full year to be in the range of £380m to £420m. Analysts had previously on average estimated the figure to be £380m.

“easyJet has delivered a strong performance in the quarter right across the business,” said outgoing CEO Carolyn McCall.

“Our purposeful and disciplined growth continues to strengthen our market positions and we are seeing an underlying improving revenue trend,” she added.

She said that the group’s “continuing product and digital innovation is generating revenue growth” and that “underlying cost control is strong”.

The number of passengers carried increased by 10.8 per cent to 22.3 million in the quarter to the end of June. Load factor – a measure used to determine how full each place is – increased by 1.1 percentage points to 93.1 per cent.

Total revenue for the period increased by 16 per cent to £1.4bn, helped by the timing of Easter, a higher load factor, and what the company described as “an improving underlying trend in the trading environment”. 

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The airline also said that it had received approval for an airline operating licence from authorities in Austria. Earlier this month, easyJet said it would to protect its flying rights after Brexit.

On Monday,  announced that it had appointed Ms McCall as its , taking over from Adam Crozier, who announced in May that he was stepping down.

Ms McCall has been CEO of easyJet for seven years, helping to grow the business into one of the world’s biggest and most competitive low-cost carriers that services more than 800 routes across 30 countries. Before that, she was chief executive of .

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