In his first address to shareholders as CEO of BA
, Willie Walsh says 'Fleet is a critical issue, but renewal is not imminent'.
Other Walsh statements in BA
's shareholders' newsletter that included results for the half year to 30 September included:
'There is no change to the current business plan priorities and these are, first and foremost, preparing for the move to Terminal 5 in March 2008.'
'Looking beyond some oif the business plaqn priorities, industry consolidation is high on the agenda but contrary to media speculation, we are not active at this time. In the meantime we will continue to develop commercial relationships with other airlines.'
'In the current round of negotiations [between the EU and US] however, Washington's failure to offer any substantive concessions on lifting foreign ownership control of US airlines is a missed opportunity.'
'On other key matters, after a recent shorthaul review, we have decided to retain a two class operation at Heathrow and at Gatwick but we will make targeted changes in the three shorthaul segments. At Heathrow, we will do so through the Fit for 5 programme, at Gatwick, we have set challenging cost and revenue targets. Our regional operations will be resstructured and details will be announced in the New Year.'
Martin Broughton, BA
's Chairman, made the following amongst other comments:
'Group pre-tax profit for the six months ended September 30 was £365 million, a fall of £3 million over the corresponding period of 2004.'
[Note that 2004 first half results included £81M profit on asset disposals (including 20% od the shares of Qantas) while 2005 disposals showed a loss of £2M.]
'Operating profit . . . amounted to £437 million, an increas of £63 million.'
'It is an interesting time to be renewing [EU / US] negotiations - just as Delta and Northwest joinn United . . . in Chapter 11 and take advantage oif all the subsidies available, so that they can compete more strongly on routes the US gfovernment opens up for them. The EU wouldn't allow such subsidies but don't seem to object to externally subsidised airlines.'
'At the time of going to press we are awaiting the US proposals on foreign ownership restrictions with greatr interest . . . We believe, however, that it is better to seek a good deal than a quick deal . . .'
'It is not widely recognised that there is already more competition on the North Atlantic between London and the US than any other major European gateway. There are four major airlines who compete out of London Heathrow on all major routes on the North Atlantic with an average of 23 flights from London Heathrow and New York. The comparable number from Frankfurt is six and for Paris 12. With thw advent of niche all-premium airlines such as EOS and MAX Jet . . . we face even more competition.'
'We have been leading the industry in pushing for aviation to be included in emissions trading. We have reduced carbon emissions from our aircraft by eight per cent since 2000.'
'. . . revenue is now expected to grow by between six - seven per cent [in 2005-06], up 0.5 points from our previous guidance.'
'. . . some yield improvement is now expected for this financial year.'
Other highlights from the report are:
Passengers carried (000) 18,944 (-0.9%)
Revenue passenger kilometers (M) 57,580 (+3.1%)
Available seat kilometers (M) 74,158 (+1.9%)
Passenger load factor (%) 77.6 (+0.9 pts)
Revenue per Revenue Passenger Kilometer (£) 0.0605 (+1.5%)
Tonnes of cargo carried (000) 382 (-11.0%)
Aircraft in service (as at 30 Sep) 288 (+1)