Etihad’s profits soar


ABU DHABI, 29 May 2015: Etihad Airways net profits surged by more than half in 2014 to USD73 million, the Abu Dhabi-based carrier said Thursday, buoyed by increased passenger numbers and further expansion into the European market.

Revenue for the fast-growing carrier rose 26.7% to USD7.6 billion, with net profits increasing 52.1% from USD48 million in 2013, Etihad said in a statement.

The airline said it carried 14.8 million passengers in 2014, up 22.3% from the year before, when it transported 12.1 million passengers.

The company agreed in June last year to acquire 49% of Italy’s debt-laden Alitalia, widening its reach into the European market.

inside no 8Launched in 2003, Etihad is expanding rapidly and has bought minor shares in several smaller carriers around the world.

These include 29% of Air Berlin, 40% of Air Seychelles, 19.9% of Virgin Australia and 3% of Irish carrier Aer Lingus.

Etihad also has a 24% stake in India’s Jet Airways and a 49%- share in Air Serbia.

Along with Dubai’s Emirates and Qatar Airways, Etihad has been widening Gulf carriers’ share of transcontinental travel, turning their home cities into hubs for global air transport.

European and North American legacy carriers have complained about the fast expansion of Gulf airlines, accusing them of receiving government subsidies.

© 1994-2015 Agence France-Presse