Capital A narrows net loss for FY2021

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(PHOTO: Shutterstock) A, previously known as AirAsia Group, has narrowed its net loss to RM3.12 billion (US$743 million) in the financial year ended 31 December (FY2021) from RM5.11 billion in FY2020. Revenue shrank to RM1.73 billion versus RM3.27 billion previously, it said in a filing to the Malaysian stock exchange. Capital A said its Teleport logistics unit has contributed to 31 percent of the group’s revenue and said its Super App and BigPay units saw steady growth in their revenues as they launched more products and invested in technology and talent to scale up the business.

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic continues to affect the group’s operations adversely. “While international borders remained closed, the group focused on providing domestic operations in our operating countries while growing our digital businesses,” the company said in its exchange statement.

In FY2021, the load factor for the aviation group was 74 percent following strategies implemented to handle various COV ID-19-related lockdowns and border closures. The airline carried 4.81 million passengers during the year down 64 percent from 13.31 million in FY2020. For the fourth quarter (Q4) ended Dec 31, 2021, net loss trimmed to RM884.09 million from RM2.45 billion in Q4 FY2020, while revenue jumped to RM717.12 million compared to RM328.39 million previously.

Capital A said the improvement in revenue was due to easing travel restrictions and the introduction of quarantine free travel lanes. About 64 percent of group revenue was attributed to the aviation segment while the remaining 36 percent was derived from the digital businesses. Teleport accounted for 19 percent of revenue against 10 percent in Q4 FY2020.

It said for AirAsia Malaysia, the passengers carried and capacity increased by 164 percent and 139 percent respectively as compared to the same quarter in the previous year, on the back of rising demand after the reopening of state borders. Its load factor increased by seven percentage points year-on-year and 19 percentage points quarter-on-quarter to 80 per cent in conjunction with the year-end festive season and increased frequencies on high demand routes including between Kuala Lumpur (KL) and Langkawi, followed by the KL-Kota Kinabalu route in November and December 2021.

AirAsia Group is diversifying into several areas like deliveries, music, logistics and other businesses. (PHOTO: AirAsia)

AirAsia Indonesia saw its load factor grew 22 percentage points to 81 percent Q4 FY2021 driven by increased frequency of flights in line with growing demand, particularly in December 2021. For 2021, the load factor was 64 percent.

AirAsia Philippines continued to outperform with load factor achieving 85 percent for the Q4 FY2021 as a result of strong pent up demand in a number of core destinations including Cebu, Cagayan de Oro, Boracay, and Tacloban. It posted a healthy 2021 load factor of 80 percent.

AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes. (PHOTO: Shutterstock)

Capital A CEO Tony Fernandes said “Despite numerous challenges and uncertainties, the group recorded so many commendable achievements in 2021. We closed the year with the successful raising of RM974.5 million through the listing exercise of RCUIDS and warrants, signalling strong investor confidence in our airlines recovery and group strategy to become a digital travel and lifestyle services group. The digital transformation which commenced well before the pandemic, has already received overwhelming support to-date through various fundraising initiatives, raising over RM 2.5 billion through debt and equity financing.”

A unit of AirAsia is also developing drone programmes as the airline diversifies into different business areas. (PHOTO: Travelport)

“The pandemic enabled the acceleration of our transformation strategy,” Fernandes said. “Marking our new era,  we have recently renamed the group from AirAsia Group to Capital A…the name change better reflects the group’s core business and future undertakings now that we are more than an airline. Capital A is an investment company with a broad portfolio of businesses which all deliver the best value at the lowest cost, supported by strong data built up over two decades. The group also has one of Asia’s leading brands to ride on, a strong people-first culture and an underlying promise of remaining committed to serving the underserved in all that we do. Just like what the airline has done from day one, all of the group’s different lines of business will deliver the same strategy that is underscored by doing what we do best – making travel and everyday lifestyle services affordable, accessible and inclusive to all.”

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