Australia’s Transport Workers’ Union have asked Qantas’ CEO to resign over for “empty guarantees to frustrated passengers” and “announcing more tactics to silence staff and suppress wages.”
Phil Noble | Reuters
Australia’s flagship carrier Qantas Airways reported a record annual profit on Thursday as demand for air travel continues to boom post-pandemic, with the airline announcing a share buyback and plans to bring more planes to the sky.
The carrier announced it had reached an underlying profit before tax of $2.47 billion Australian dollars ($1.6 billion) for the yr that ended June 30, from the previous A$1.86 billion loss a yr ago, a statement read.
The board has also approved A$500 million buyback which can start in September.
“We’re rather a lot higher than where we were in the beginning of the yr,” CEO Alan Joyce told CNBC’s “Street Signs Asia” on Thursday, attributing the profits to its strong standing in Australia’s airline industry as a result of low cancellation rates and “on time performance.”
Demand for domestic and international flights have made regular recovery for the reason that pandemic, and the airline is ready to extend its fleet.
Shares of Qantas closed greater than 1% higher on Thursday.
Qantas also announced Thursday that it has placed a multi-billion dollar order for 12 Airbus 350 and 12 Boeing 787 aircraft because it looks to retire older planes.
“We have a commitment to over 170 aircrafts over the following decade, and that permits us to renew our domestic and international fleet,” Joyce said.
“Our balance sheet is as strong as it has been in many years, and our earnings have made a step level with a billion dollars cost out which suggests we will afford this fleet alternative growth going forward,” he added.
New flight routes are also within the works, with long-haul direct flights from Sydney to London and New York set to take off in 2025.
Joyce highlighted that the airline was “very brave” to place in an order for brand new aircrafts in the course of the pandemic because it now “allows us to do things no other airline on this planet” can do.
Pent-up demand and revenge travel spending have kept flight prices high, but that is expected to “come down significantly” in the following 12 months as international capability shall be increased by 6.4 million seats next yr, Joyce said.
Domestic air fares at the moment are on average 20% dearer than in 2019 as a result of inflation and better fuel prices, and the price of international flights has surged by 40% to 50% since 4 years ago.
Joyce shall be retiring from his current position in November and is ready to get replaced by Vanessa Hudson, the airline’s first female CEO.