VIRGIN PROFITS SOAR

VIRGIN PROFITS SOAR

VIRGIN Blue Holdings Limited has recorded a $62.5 million profit for the December half, which is a sharp turn from a loss of more than $100 million in the previous half.

Managing director Brett Godfrey says the company was able to achieve the result on the back of cost reductions and enhanced productivity, during the toughest moment in the industry’s history.

“Airlines struggled because they are very much at the forefront of discretionary spending, but they’re also the first to spring back,” says Godfrey.

“We have a seasonal business and our traditionally busiest part of the year is the December half – that and ongoing strong price competition will likely see pressure maintained on yield improvement for the remainder of this year.”

The company has previously offered full year profit guidance between $80 million and $110 million.

Godfrey says he has a ‘bucket list’ to complete before leaving the company he founded, but indicated he may extend his stay past April.

“There’s a few things in the pipes I hope to get done before I leave - I set myself four or five things I want to complete, a sort of bucket list before I leave.

“I’ll remain on the board for a vetting period because Virgin’s been a life commitment for me, and after that I will stay in an advisory role - this is the job I always wanted and I’m not leaving it do anything else.”

He says the company’s V Australia will be ‘formidable’ once the US Department of Transport approves an extension of its partnership with Delta Airlines, which is likely to occur this calendar year.

“At the moment we’re halfway through a joint venture where we’ll be able to pull our planes, resources and people together to give a better product and service to customers – the ACCC has already approved it.”

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