SpiceJet reported a 22% slump in net profit on Tuesday for the March quarter despite grounding of Boeing MAX aircraft. It reported a profit of ₹56.3 crore for the quarter ended March 31st, 2019 as against ₹46.2 crore in the same quarter last year. The airline’s capacity in terms of seat kilometer went up by 21% while average fare was up by 11%.
The reported quarter profit does not include any form of reimbursements or compensation on the grounded aircraft and for which SpiceJet is working with the manufacturer, the airline said in a statement.
Revenue from operations rose by 25% to ₹2,477 crore during the quarter under review as compared to ₹1,995.04 crore in the corresponding quarter of earlier fiscal.
Ajay Singh, chairman and managing director of SpiceJet, said: “SpiceJet has posted a strong recovery in last two quarters after suffering a loss of INR 427.5 crore in the first two quarters due to steep increase in fuel costs and sudden depreciation of the rupee. This recovery comes despite the unprecedented challenges we faced during Q4 FY2019 which saw the grounding of as many as 13 of our MAX planes.”
For the year ending March 31, SpiceJet reported a net loss of ₹316.1 crore in FY 2019.
SpiceJet shares ended 1.5% higher at ₹148 on BSE, after hitting a fresh 52-week high of ₹153 earlier in the session.
SpiceJet, currently the country’s third-largest domestic carrier behind IndiGo and Air India, carried 14.41 lakh passengers during April, registering a 13.1% market share, according to data from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA). The airline currently has over 92 aircraft in its fleet consisting mostly of Boeing 737s.
SpiceJet has been one of the fastest growing airlines (in terms of passengers travelled) in the country. However, it faced several challenges during the past few months that threatened to derail its growth. This included the ban on operation of Boeing Co’s 737 MAX aircraft tin the Indian airspace, in March, following the fatal crash of a plane of the same type in Ethiopia and a similar fatal accident involving a Lion Air aircraft of the same type during October last year.