Gatwick Airport reports 1.2% growth in passenger numbers

UK’s second largest airport, Gatwick Airport Ltd, today announced its financial results for the year ended 31 March 2013, and said the figures are in line with its expectations as economic conditions continue to be challenging.

The airport reported traffic of 34.2 million passengers, reflecting a growth of 1.2%. The figures were boosted by the addition of Air China and Turkish Airlines at Gatwick, which added links to Beijing and Istanbul, as well new routes from existing carriers such as easyJet to Moscow and expanded services from Vietnam Airlines. Gatwick also achieved record passenger satisfaction and reaching 100% service quality targets for the year.

According to Gatwick, its turnover rose by 4.2% to £538.9m, which resulted in a 2.5% increase of EBITDA to £227.1m. However there was a loss of £29.1m in the financial year, but this was an improvement over the previous year’s loss of £45.7. The loss for this year is said to be a reflection of the asset-intensive nature of the business and the continued investment being made to transform the airport. This investment of £226.7m in the year was in line with expectations and included projects such as the complete resurfacing of the runway and taxiways, along with the installation of LED lights, while the airport remained fully operational. The retail offerings in North Terminal have also been improved, with the addition of brands like Jamie’s Italian. The airline added that it has made a total investment of £938.5m over the last five years.

Gatwick also stated that it has commenced detailed work on the options for a new runway and it has made submissions to the Airports Commission this year that include papers on Aviation Connectivity and the Economy; Making Best Use of Existing Capacity in the Short and Medium Term; and Aviation and Climate Change. The airport has also proposed a new deal to the Civil aviation authority (CAA) for a ‘Contracts and Commitments’ framework that would change regulations to offer a better deal for both passengers and airlines. The CAA has assessed this work and Gatwick said it submitted a revised offer today.