Saturday 18 November 2017

Budget carrier Wizz Air cuts forecasts blaming low prices and extreme weather

Wizz Air ceo Jozsef Varadi speaking in Dublin
Wizz Air ceo Jozsef Varadi speaking in Dublin
Louise Kelly

Louise Kelly

Budget airline Wizz Air has cut its full year profit guidance by 8pc attributing the drop to low prices and extreme weather conditions.

The Eastern European-focussed firm has downgraded from an income range of €245-€255m to €225-235m.

"Although the current financial year is looking like a very good year for Wizz Air and we remain excited about our prospects for the next financial year, lower fuel prices continue to feed through to lower airfares, and this downward trend looks likely to continue well into 2017," chief executive Jozsef Varadi said.

Wizz Air, is listed on the London stock exchange and a FTSE-250 company. It is the biggest carrier in central and eastern Europe, competing with Ryanair in many markets.

Read more: Wizz Air boss: We will fly from Dublin but won't pick 'dogfight' with Ryanair

In an exclusive interview with the Irish Independent last month, CEO said the airline will eventually enter the Dublin market, but doesn't plan to engage in a frontal assault on Ryanair just yet.

"I recognise that we are not flying to Ireland, but I'm sure that we will be at some point," said Mr Varadi.

Wizz Air reported a Q3 underlying net income of €13.5m, down from €17.2m in the prior year, and behind our estimate of €21.5m.

According to the firm, capacity was up 20.8pc and it had started operating 26 new routes in the third quarter.

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