KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 21 – Asia’s largest budget carrier, AirAsia Bhd, posted a 3.62 per cent increase in third-quarter net profit today and said it would continue to launch more routes in the region.
The Malaysian-listed airline said net profit for the quarter ended Sept. 30 was RM157.81 million and said revenue climbed to RM1.24 billion, 14.4 per cent higher than a year earlier.
The company has been expanding in Southeast Asia and is planning to buy up to 100 Airbus jets, potentially worth around US$9 billion (RM27.55 billion). It recently scrapped a US$80 million deal to buy Indonesia’s Batavia Air, calling the purchase too risky.
“The fourth quarter is predominantly our strongest quarter,” AirAsia’s chief executive officer Aireen Omar said in a statement. “We will continue to launch more routes and add more frequencies to cater to the high demand. This year, we have a total of 21 brand new Airbus A320s coming in which is being distributed among the five entities to support their growth.”
AirAsia group has a total fleet of 112 A320s and is expecting 266 more aircraft to be delivered up to 2026, it said.
Shares of AirAsia fell 0.35 per cent to RM2.85 per share, underperforming the Malaysian benchmark stock index’s 0.08 per cent drop.
The carrier’s stock is rated by 20 out of 26 analysts as a “strong buy” or “buy,” while two rate the stock a “hold” and four rate it as “underperform” or “sell.” – Reuters