Emirates – more passengers, more mobile bookings, less profit


Emirates Group – comprising the eponymous airline and Dnata, a mix of airport, ground handling and consumer travel businesses – has seen a big drop in its full-year profit.

Revenues for the year to end-March were actually up by nearly 2% at around AED 95 billion ($26 billion). The profit attributable to owners plummeted by 70% but still came in at AED 2.5 billion ($670 million).

The airline noted “a slew of destabilising events during the year” – terror attacks in Europe, Brexit, Trump to name but a few.

The technology and distribution aspects of the airline and Dnata are referenced throughout the 200+ page annual report.

The overview of the airline revealed that bookings made via the Emirates app were up 200% year-on-year with a 120% increase in app downloads. The app is available in 18 languages, and Emirates claims that its emirates.com site has “the most comprehensive online payment capability in the airline industry” with more than 50 payment options. Its Emirates Skywards loyalty scheme now has more than 17 mililion members.

As part of its digital transformation, it is “redesigning how [it does] business, powered by an entirely new suite of technologies…Blockchain-enabled applications for instance, will contribute to real time transaction capabilities.”

During the period the airline carried 56.1 million passengers – up from 51.9 million –  at a load factor of 75.1% – down from 76.5%.

The detailed financial breakdown showed that sales and marketing fell by 3% and stood at AED 5.7 billion ($1.6 billion), with “lower selling and distribution  costs” mentioned.

The Dnata unit is made up of four business units, with  “travel services” home to its B2C brands usch as dnata Travel, Gold Medal, Travel Republic, Travelbag and Netflights. It also runs Emirates Holidays, a corporate travel operation, some destination management companies and has “recently launched” a  bedbank, YalaGo.

Travel services was the only one of the four units within Dnata to see its  revenues drop in what was Dnata’s best ever  year. The UK is the source of 84% of the travel services AED 3.1 billion ($843 million) revenues, and the depreciation in sterling during the year  outweighed the increased synergy benefits across the UK brands.

Travel Republic, however, experienced a  “successful turnaround” in the year, it said.

Click here to access a holding page from where the full report be accessed.



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