- Bumper year for SAS as airline outstrips UK and Irish market growth
- SAS sees global earnings increase by 117 MGBP (1.6 BSEK)
Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) today announced record performance for the UK and Irish market during 2006. SAS has experienced a very good year, outstripping competitor airlines and upping its UK market share. In 2006 SAS carried more passengers from the UK to Scandinavia than any other operator, claiming 37 per cent of the market share.
SAS outperformed the UK market in 2006, recording an increase in passenger figures year on year of 4 per cent, exceeding the market growth of 3 per cent. In the UK and Ireland SAS experienced an increase in the cabin factor* to a record 72 per cent. SAS total revenue also showed positive growth with a 9 per cent rise on the 2005 figures.
Commenting on the success of SAS, Lars-Ove Filipson, General Manager United Kingdom & Ireland, Scandinavian Airlines System said: “SAS has brought a new level of product innovation and competition to the UK and Irish market place, through the successful introduction of our one-way fares, fully flexible tickets and our premium economy service, Economy Extra. We have worked hard to establish our new service from London City Airport and have achieved the highest proportion of business class ticket sales out of London City than any other London airport that we serve.
We look forward to continuing to offer the UK and Irish market the high level of service SAS customers have come to expect from us. ”Strong growth in both the UK and Irish economies resulted in a heightened demand for business and leisure travel. SAS capitalized on the prevailing economic cycle and the buoyant financial market by introducing double daily services to Copenhagen and Stockholm from London City. SAS also attracted more customers to SAS with the airline’s unique one-way pricing structure and full ticket combinability, which the airline launched in September 2005. SAS operates full business and economy services on all flights, in addition to its unique premium economy service, Economy Extra.
Economy Extra is a unique way of travelling for business passengers, providing an efficient service including business class check-in facilities and fully flexible fares with no restrictions. Economy Extra passengers are seated in a dedicated area between the business and economy sections, receive a complimentary meal with drinks and can earn extra EuroBonus frequent flyer points. Economy Extra has proven exceptionally popular since its introduction in November 2004 and is the class that has seen the biggest growth in passenger numbers, up 8 per cent in 2006. During peak business months SAS sold one in five tickets in this class.
The SAS UK and Irish results have been mirrored by the SAS Group full year financial result released this week in Sweden. The favorable economy combined with new business models and effective cost control has resulted in improved earnings for the SAS Group. Income before capital gains and nonrecurring items amounted to MSEK 1,279 (92 MGBP) for the period, an improvement of MSEK 1,165. Scandinavian Airlines in particular, saw an earnings increase of 1.6 BSEK (117MGBP). The SAS Group reported that the 2006 results were good and that there were no indications of a slowdown in the economy or the airline market.