Higher fuel costs push India's top airline to bigger loss

2 minute read

The logo of IndiGo Airlines is pictured on a passenger aircraft on the tarmac in Colomiers near Toulouse, France, July 10, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau

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BENGALURU, May 25 (Reuters) - InterGlobe Aviation Ltd (INGL.NS), the operator of India's biggest airline IndiGo, reported a larger loss for the fourth quarter on Wednesday as higher fuel costs more than offset a rebound in demand for air travel.

After two years of pandemic-curtailed travel, airlines globally have made a comeback in recent months riding on a wave of pent-up demand that has encouraged them to bump up capacity.

But the industry's recovery faces risks from a surge in global jet fuel prices, which neared 14-year highs in the quarter after the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

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"Although traffic rebounded and demand was robust during the latter half of the quarter, we were challenged by high fuel costs and a weakening rupee," Chief Executive Ronojoy Dutta said in a statement.

InterGlobe's aircraft fuel expenses soared 68.2% to 32.21 billion rupees ($415.31 million) in the period, while total expenses surged 31.5%. read more

Net loss came in at 16.80 billion rupees for the three months ended March 31, compared with a loss of 11.59 billion rupees a year earlier.

However, the resurgence in air travel demand helped revenue from operations jump 29% to 80.21 billion rupees. Passenger load factor, or the passenger carrying capacity being used, rose to 76.7%.

Yields, a metric of profitability, increased 19.2% to 4.40 rupees.

($1 = 77.5040 Indian rupees)

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Reporting by Chandini Monnappa in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya Soni

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