Schiphol H1 Profit Triples, Aviation Posts Loss

August 30, 2010

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Dutch airport operator Schiphol Group said first-half profit tripled, as growth in its consumer and real estate units offset a security-driven loss in its main aviation operations.

The group, which operates airports in Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Eindhoven, said on Monday the cost of introducing new security measures and installing new equipment following the attempted bombing of an Amsterdam-to-Detroit flight last Christmas drove its aviation unit into the red.

"We are currently in discussion with our customers to seek a solution that gets us to a reasonable positive return," chief executive Jos Nijhuis said.

Overall, the group posted a net profit of EUR€69.2 million (USD$88 million), up from EUR€22.4 million a year ago. Revenue dipped to EUR€545 million from EUR€553.5 million.

A decline in operating expenses and fair value losses on property helped the bottom line.

The group said airspace closures in April and May from the Icelandic volcanic ash cloud cost it EUR€12 million revenue and cut its operating result by EUR€15 million.

Its consumer unit saw profit rise 58 percent on higher concession and retailing revenue inside airports, offset by lower parking results. Profit more than tripled at the real estate unit on the declining fair value losses and lower operating expenses.

For the year, Schiphol Group said it expected a net profit of EUR€160 million, up from its prior forecast of EUR€132 million, on an expectation passenger traffic will rise at the main airport in Amsterdam by 1.5 percent to 2 percent.

Schiphol Group is owned by the Dutch government, the cities of Amsterdam and Rotterdam and Aeroports de Paris.