Cites high cost of fuel, Fx shortage as major operational challenges
Med-View Airlines Plc has declared N1.50 billion profit before tax for the year 2017.
The airline, at its yearly general meeting in Lagos, disclosed to shareholders an increase in turnover of 42 percent at N36.961 billion from N26.039 billion in 2016 and an increase in profit after tax of 63 percent at N1.255 billion from N772 million in 2016.
Consequently, a dividend of 3k per every 50k ordinary share will be payable to registered shareholders from April 3, 2018.Chief Executive Officer of the airline, Muneer Bankole, said notwithstanding the challenges of the economic environment, the company is firmly on the path of improved performance, sustainable growth, profitability and adequate returns to all stakeholders within the shortest possible period of time.
Bankole said the company was able to increase its revenue by expanding routes within Nigeria and into new markets such as Abidjan, Conakry and Dakar.
“The addition of these new destinations is in addition to the previous destinations of Accra, Monrovia, and Freetown, increasing our destinations in the West Coast to six. Furthermore, plans are being concluded to include the United States of America (Houston), Lisbon (Portugal) and South Africa (Johannesburg) as future destinations, after consolidating our operations in the United Kingdom.
“These future destinations are due to open on or before the second/third quarter of 2018. The company sees these routes as a viable avenue to generate more income and increase its international brand visibility, considering the number of Nigerians resident in those regions,” he said. He, however, added that the aviation industry continues to suffer challenges occasioned by acute shortage of foreign exchange to pay for regular foreign checks for aircraft and services rendered in other countries.
“Aviation fuel was another major challenge that bedeviled the industry with scarcity and soaring costs of procuring the essential input for our business.
“Unfortunately, we are unable to directly pass on these costs to the flying public because of the immediate slowdown in the purchasing power of the people. Hence, we had to absorb a lot of these costs with the attendant effect on our profitability despite the rise in gross revenues.”
Bankole added that despite the economic challenges and government’s inadequate support for the aviation sector, Med-View had navigated the challenging economic situation quite well.
The airline is currently in negotiations with aircraft providers to add a new B737-800 and a modern B777-200ER to its fleet to further boost its international operations.
Chairman of the airline, Sheik Abdul-Moshen Al-Thunayan, said a combination of stable internal growth and increasing exposure to new investment opportunities gave the board the confidence as to Med-View Airlines’ future prospects.Al-Thunayan said: “I am indeed delighted at the milestones achieved in 2017 and I am sure you (shareholders) are also happy to be a part of this company.”He thanked fellow shareholders for their trust and continuous support, urging them not to relent in supporting the board and management for the progress of the company.
Stakeholders at the forum commended the airlines’ management and board of directors for the positive outlook, though emphasized the need to improve customers’ service and relation.
The Guardian NG