Acsa posts R2.6bn loss as passenger volumes plunge
Acsa’s R2.6bn loss in its year to end-March is the second in its 28-year history, but it expects better days ahead
Airports Company SA (Acsa), the state-owned company that manages airports including OR Tambo and King Shaka, booked its second loss in its 28-year history in its 2021 year, when SA passenger volumes plunged by more than three quarters.
The group reported a R2.6bn loss for the year ending March, from a profit of R1.4bn previously, as tourism and business travel ground to a halt amid state-imposed restrictions and general anxiety over Covid-19.
Passenger figures for the year fell 78.2% to 4.6-million, with Acsa’s R2.2bn in revenue less than a third of what it brought in its 2020 year, with the pandemic reflected in every stream of revenue.
Aircraft landing fees were R368m compared to R1.3bn the previous year, aircraft parking fees were R29m compared to R55m, and passenger service charges fell to R414m, from R2.4bn.
Airports Company of SA has felt the Covid-19 pinch. The company has reported an annual loss of R2.6bn, reflecting the pandemic’s impact on aviation and tourism during the period. Alishia Seckam spoke to CEO Siphamandla Mthethwa for more detail,
In response, the group moved to shore up its finances, and Acsa disposed of its 10% shareholding in Mumbai International Airport for R1.26bn, received a loan of R810m from the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA), and received R2.3bn from the issuance of preference shares to government.
CEO Mpumi Mpofu said Acsa was encouraged by a recent improvement in passenger figures while SA’s removal from the UK’s travel red list, and reduced restrictions generally, pointed to a stronger summer holiday season than was expected during the height of the SA’s third wave in July.
“Our responsible approach meant when the pandemic struck, Acsa had already reduced its debt by some R10bn over the previous seven years,” she said.
“The low gearing and asset base of more than R31bn are therefore providing a solid base for recovery over three to five years,” she said.
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