LaudaMotion’s CEO Andreas Gruber, announced to Air Transport World that the airline expected to make a loss of between €50 million and €70 million for the financial year 2020 whilst expecting to be profitable in 2021.
The airline, currently changing its branding from LaudaMotion to simply Lauda has made losses of €140 million during its startup 2019 financial year.
In a large part due to the purchase costs of aircraft, of which they’ve received 20 of 25 A320-200s order, the loses don’t seem to worry the airline much due to them having the financial strength of their parent company, Ryanair. In contrast to Ryanair Lauda envisages purchasing 100 A3201neo aircraft for future expansion (50 orders and 50 options).
Speaking to ATW, Mr Gruber stated:
We are currently operating with a 94% load factor and we sold 7.3 million tickets. During the 2020 financial year, we expect 6.5 million passengers on more than 122 routes. This is a strong number, which we already reached in our second year of operations.
It is understandable why he is so upbeat with a load factor so high, especially considering most business (especially airlines) are rarely profitable within their earliest periods of trading. They are also “operating 32 routes from Vienna, expecting 800,000 passengers”.
Lauda are facing an extreme amount of competition from Vienna, with Wizz Air announcing that they wil add extra aircraft to its base at the airport, with IAG owned low-cost carrier LEVEL also announcing that they plan to base four A321s at the airport.
Named after and previously owned by the late, great triple F1 world champion Niki Lauda (who recently sadly passed away suddenly), the airline was originally a charter business jet company but following a merger with now defunct airline Niki (also named after and owned by Niki Lauda) moved towards being a low-cost carrier.
Nick Ashwell-Rice has worked in aviation and defence journalism since 2014 whilst also maintaining a career outside of the industry. He has been Editor-in-Chief at Talking Aero since its inception