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Copenhagen Airport Returns to Profit

In a bustling second quarter, Copenhagen Airport (CPH) reduced the pre-tax loss experienced during winter. It recorded a pre-tax profit of DKK 167 million (24.6 million USD), resulting in an overall pre-tax profit of DKK 108 million (15.9 million USD) for the first half of the year.

Despite a 14 percent decrease from 2019, the airport saw significant traffic of 12.4 million passengers during this six-month period. Additionally, CPH has revised its outlook for 2023 upwards. 

The financial results for the year’s first half were satisfactory for Copenhagen Airport. It ended the period with an organization poised to handle the influx of travelers during the peak summer season. 

The first six months of the year saw 12.4 million passengers traversing the airport, a 31 percent increase year-on-year. However, this figure still sits 14 percent below the corresponding period in 2019, pre-COVID-19. 

Thomas Woldbye, CEO of Copenhagen Airport, commented on the half-year results, “Given the challenging reboot post-COVID-19, the results are satisfactory. Nevertheless, the absolute level is not sufficient, considering the necessary investments and our inevitable rising costs.” 

The year’s first half revenue was DKK 1,898 million, a 22 percent increase from the first half of 2022. 

Woldbye noted, “The encouraging news is that CPH is back at full strength organizationally, primed to provide high-quality service and performance to passengers, airlines, and customers. By June, we had onboarded 372 employees, with approximately half being re-hired, effectively preparing us for a busy summer period.” 

Over the past two years since the nadir of the COVID-19 crisis, the 800 companies operating in and around the airport have re-hired more than 3,600 employees, bringing their total workforce to approximately 16,500 people.

CPH Airside Improvements: Investments of DKK 1.6 billion

In April 2023, the Copenhagen Airport (CPH) successfully secured fresh credit facilities amounting to a significant DKK 7 billion. This strategic maneuver effectively refinanced the company’s financial obligations slated for August 2023. 

This year, a resolution on future airline charges for airport utilization from 2024 onwards will be decided. Establishing this resolution will ensure a degree of predictability for both the airport and airlines. This will foster an environment of mutual cooperation in areas such as route development and operational efficacy. 

For the ongoing year, CPH has planned a substantial investment of DKK 1.6 billion. The investment will be primarily directed toward developing the airside terminal area between Piers B and C. This project carries a hefty price tag of approximately DKK 5 billion. It includes significant upgrades such as expanded passenger and passport control areas and more than a twofold increase in the baggage reclaim area in Terminal 3. This initiative marks the airport’s most significant project in its recent history, with the initial phases projected for completion by 2027. 

However, despite these promising developments, CPH faces the formidable task of managing escalating operational and development costs. These costs stem from various factors, such as rising salary expenditures, more stringent regulatory requirements, and the economic burden of interest expenses and debt repayment. As underscored by CEO Woldbye, CPH must continue operating the airport with maximum efficiency while maintaining an unwavering commitment to cost control.

Copenhagen Airport’s Green Transition Advances

The aviation industry, including the airport, is making significant strides toward a green transition, despite the harsh impact of the COVID-19 crisis. 

Woldbye underscores the imperative for the entire aviation industry to reduce its carbon footprint. 

To accomplish this requisite, several measures are being implemented. These include expanding solar panel installation, an annual energy and heating cost reduction of 3 percent, investments in the electricity charging infrastructure, and replacing petrol and diesel-fueled equipment and vehicles with electric alternatives. 

In recognition of its dedicated efforts to reduce carbon emissions, Copenhagen Airport (CPH) received the highest accolade in the Airport Carbon Accreditation (ACA) program this past spring.

Copenhagen’s Almost Back on Track: Flight Network Nearing Full Restoration

Efforts to restore the airline network at Copenhagen Airport are making significant progress. This summer, passengers can select from 177 direct routes to 52 countries. This figure nears the pre-pandemic statistics of 2019, when the airport offered direct connections to 196 destinations across 59 countries. 

Woldbye remarks, “The resurgence of travel options from Copenhagen not only benefits Denmark and southern Sweden residents but also welcomes the influx of foreign tourists and business travelers expected this year.” 

Remarkably, over 70% of available seats are being sold, bringing the load factor back to levels close to pre-2019. However, destinations in Asia and China still show signs of slow recovery for long-haul routes departing Europe. Over half of the passengers have yet to return. Conversely, the route network to North America is bustling and nearing full recovery.

CPH Upgraded 2023 Annual Forecast

Following an uptick in activity throughout the spring season, Copenhagen Airport (CPH) has revised its full-year guidance. This revision was disclosed in a company announcement made on July 11th. The expected number of travelers for the year 2023 has increased from an initial figure of over 25 million to surpassing 26 million. 

Factors contributing to this guidance upgrade extend beyond the surge in passenger traffic. Notably, a resolution between Naviair and the air traffic controllers has eased uncertainties regarding the volume of aircraft operations that Copenhagen Airport can accommodate. 

If passenger numbers reach the 26 million mark, CPH projects a pre-tax profit within the DKK 300–350 million bracket. To put this into context, in the last pre-COVID-19 year, the airport reported a robust pre-tax profit of DKK 1.3 billion.

Singapore Airlines Plans Return of Daily Service from Copenhagen

From 1 July 2024, SIA’s Singapore-Copenhagen services (SQ352 and SQ351) will return to daily flights with the A350-900 aircraft. This is up from the current five times weekly, restoring pre-pandemic service.

1 July 2024 – 26 October 2024
SQ352Singapore – CopenhagenDaily0030 – 0655 hrsAirbus A350- 900LH
SQ351Copenhagen – SingaporeDaily1220 – 0620 hrs (+1)Airbus A350- 900LH
Source: Singapore Airlines

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