* 2014 net loss A$355.6 mln vs A$98.1 mln in 2013
* No earnings guidance
* Sells stake in frequent flyer program to private equity
(Recasts, adds earnings details)
SYDNEY, Aug 29 Virgin Australia Holdings
said its annual net loss tripled, hit by excess market
capacity and one-off charges, adding that it would not give
guidance for the current financial year because of an "uncertain
Virgin and rival Qantas Airways Ltd have been
engaged in a bitter price war in an attempt to increase market
Virgin also said weak consumer sentiment, a now-defunct tax
on carbon-emitting companies and a charge for the 60 percent
stake it bought in budget domestic carrier Tigerair last year
had helped widen losses.
Its net loss for the year to end-June was A$355.6 million
($333 million), compared with A$98.1 million net loss for the
The company said its underlying net loss of A$211.7 million
was in line with analysts' forecasts.
Virgin revealed its loss a day after Qantas reported an
unprecedented A$2.8 billion net loss, although Qantas' loss was
mainly due to a large restructuring. Qantas reported an
underlying loss before tax of A$646 million, better than
analysts had expected.
Virgin also said it is selling a 35 percent stake in its
frequent flyer program to private equity firm Affinity Equity
Partners in a deal which values the unit at A$960 million.
Virgin shares closed at A$0.42 on Thursday.
(1 US dollar = 1.0687 Australian dollar)
(Reporting by Byron Kaye; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)