Kenya Airways releases its operating results for the fourth quarter ended 31st March 2013.
The company put into the market capacity totalling 3,143m seat kilometres which was 4.5% below last year’s level. The decline during the period was as a result of discontinued operations to N’Djamena, Muscat and Jeddah though New Delhi joined the network in the first quarter of 2012.
Middle East and Far East regions saw a capacity growth of 18.9%. This was largely due to the operation of the larger B777 instead of the smaller B767 to Hongkong and Guangzhou via Bangkok. Europe shrunk in capacity by 30.4% compared to the same quarter prior year due to rationalization occasioned by the Euro zone crisis and anticipated lower demand during the Kenyan election period.
The Northern Africa region capacity declined by 5.4% as a result of right sizing capacity to Djibouti via Addis Ababa and the Khartoum-Cairo route. Capacity availed into the East African region grew by 34.9% compared to same period last year. This was mostly due to increased frequencies to Dar-es-salaam, Seychelles, Moroni via Dzaoudzi and equipment mix between Boeing 738 and Embraer 190.
Capacity growth in Southern Africa region remained flat. West African region declined by 6.5% mainly on the Lagos route as a result of operating the smaller B738 aircraft compared to B767. The suspension of N’Djamena as a destination due to low demand also contributed to the decline.
Capacity declined by 2.3% compared to similar period last year on the domestic front despite entry of Eldoret route. This was as a result of rationalization of Mombasa operations from the larger B737 aircraft to the smaller Embraer 190. Capacity availed to Kisumu grew by 18.7% due to use of the larger Embraer 190 fleet as opposed to Embraer 170.
Traffic measured in revenue passenger kilometres at 2,073m was 7.5% below similar period last year. Europe recorded the highest reduction due to the economic challenges facing the Euro-Zone economies that necessitated cutbacks in capacity offered including the closure of the Rome route. The total passenger tally, which closed at 828,032, was at par with the same period last year. The resulting average cabin factor at 65.9% was 2.2 points lower compared to last year.
Passenger uplift to Europe at 83,506 was a reduction from last year’s level of 113,184 at a 75.7% seat occupancy, an improvement of 5.2% over last year.
In the Middle East, Far East and India regions, uplifted passenger traffic at 130,522 showed an improvement of 11.0% compared to same period prior year. However, the realised cabin factor of 66.1% was below prior year’s level of 74.6% due to slow uptake of capacity availed.
Within Africa but excluding Kenya, passengers uplifted totalled 424,490 indicating a marginal growth of 1.1% on the back of 2.6% capacity growth. The resultant passenger cabin factor of 60.0% was 2.3 percentage points lower than similar period last year.
Passengers uplifted within Kenya at 189,514 increased by 4.3% a 1.9% cabin factor improvement.
Cargo capacity dropped by 14.9% with a proportionate decline in tonnage during the period. There was a general slump from some key feeder markets in Asia and Europe.