Heathrow annual profits forecast to fall despite rising passenger levels

Heathrow’s annual profits are forecast to decline by almost 13% despite increasing passenger numbers.

The London hub’s June investor report projected adjusted earnings down 12.8% year-on-year to £1.9 billion but up by £57 million versus the airport’s last update in December.

This came as passenger levels are expected to rise by 4.5% year-on-year to 82.8 million – above the guidance included in Heathrow’s first quarter results and 1.4 million higher than the December forecast.

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Heathrow cited a “significant” 9.7% decrease in aeronautical revenue to £2.2 billion against 2023 as being mainly due to a 20% reduction in the regulatory charges since January 1.

Operating costs are forecast to rise at the same time by almost 8% to £1.5 billion, an increase of £9 million versus the December expectation, to accommodate the increased demand. 

“Over the first five months of the year, we have seen a strong demand in traffic at Heathrow, with 32.4 million passengers travelling through the airport,” the report said.

The updated traffic forecast to 82.8 million “reflects the improved economic outlook and a strong passenger demand. 

“Operationally, we have performed well, delivering great service and successfully getting passengers on their way, particularly over the busy half terms, Easter and May public holidays. 

“In the first five months, security performance has been very strong, with over 94% of passengers now waiting less than five minutes and departure and arrival punctuality higher than in 2023.”

Heathrow also “maintained momentum” across carbon and sustainability in the period.

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