Ryanair boosts 2013 earnings expectations

Ryanair boosts 2013 earnings expectations

Low-cost airline Ryanair has increased profit forecasts for the full year after figures came in ahead of expectations for the final three months of 2012.

The Irish carrier reported an €18.1 million profit after tax in the three months to December 31st, a figure up 21 per cent on a year ago.

Ryanair now expects annual profits of close to €540 million.

In the third quarter, Ryanair benefited from an eight per cent rise in average fares, lifting overall revenues 15 per cent to €969 million.

Aer Lingus

In the latest stage of the seemingly intractable battle to take over rival Irish carrier Aer Lingus, Ryanair said it had summated an updated plan to the European Union competition authorities.

“Ryanair has submitted a radical and unprecedented remedies package to the EU in support of its offer for Aer Lingus,” explained a statement.

“We believe these remedies address every current Ryanair/Aer Lingus crossover route and all other competition issues raised by the Commission in its Statement of Objections.

Aer Lingus was given a list of objections by the European Commission in October 2012, following a third attempt to take over its smaller rival.

“The remedies involve two upfront buyers each basing aircraft in Ireland to take over and operate a substantial part of Aer Lingus’ existing route network and short-haul business,” Ryanair continued.

“This will be the first EU airline merger which will deliver structural divestitures and multiple upfront buyers.

“We look forward to completing our offer for Aer Lingus subject to receiving approval from the EU competition authorities in early March.”