Mexico's GAP Posts Higher Q4 Profit

February 27, 2012

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Mexican airport operator GAP said profits rose 24 percent in the fourth quarter from a year earlier helped by new routes and more flights from existing carriers.

Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico said in a filing on Monday with the Mexican stock exchange that it earned MXP553 million pesos (USD$39.6 million) during the October to December period, compared to MXP445 million a year earlier.

Quarterly revenue rose 11.8 percent to MXP1.256 billion pesos.

Airlines have been gradually snapping up the routes once operated by troubled airline Mexicana, which stopped flying in August 2010, buried under a debt pile and union problems.

Low-cost carriers such as Volaris, Interjet and VivaAerobus and large operators including Continental and AeroMexico took advantage of Mexicana's demise, filling in about 60 percent of the routes so far, GAP said.

Copper miner Grupo Mexico, has been steadily buying shares in the airport operator, increasing its stake in November to 26.8 percent.

The mining company said it is interested in taking a larger role in the company but GAP's bylaws prevent any non-controlling shareholder from holding more than a 10 percent stake. The dispute is being debated in court.

(Reuters)