Paul Chai

Qantas has posted a net profit of $607 million dollars for the six months ending December 2017, a significant increase on the previous first half of $515 million.

The result is a positive outcome for the airline group after 2017 saw a “transformation program” that set about tackling the issue of competition for Qantas after the national carrier took some big hits from low-cost airlines and saw its revenues fall.

“Today’s result comes from investing in areas that provide margin growth and a network strategy that makes sure we have the right aircraft on the right route,” said CEO Alan Joyce at the result announcement.

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One of the strongest areas of the results was Qantas’ domestic operations which grew 20 percent to $447 million, a record result driven in part by the truce in Virgin and Qantas so-called “capacity war” where the two airlines flooded the market with extra flights in an effort to compete with each other – and the low-cost carriers.

Qantas own budget option, Jetstar, helped drive the group’s profit with a 15 percent rise in earnings to $318 million.

Internationally, however, Qantas lost ground and it saw earnings before tax fell by 5.5 percent to $222 million due largely to fuel costs and increased competition but Joyce remains positive.

“This is an important transition year for Qantas International and it’s setting up a bright future,” he said. “The airline is welcoming the Dreamliner and making key changes to its network – including hubbing through Singapore and Perth; taking over some routes from Emirates on the Tasman, and starting the unique Perth-London service.”

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The group also announced increased investment in aircraft with Jetstar taking delivery of more A320s and Qantas will see the first of four Airbus A321NEOs, which will free up more Dreamliners to fly the Melbourne and Sydney to Bali routes.

Qantas said total revenue grew 5.8 percent to $8.66 billion in the six months to December 31.

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