Sustaining sector’s financial health

By Ibe Uwaleke   |   21 August 2015   |   12:26 am  

iata-aircraftThe International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced that the second edition of the World Financial Symposium (WFS) will focus on industry efforts to support sustained financial health.

WFS will be held 14-17 September in Barcelona, Spain against a backdrop of improving industry profitability.

Airlines are expected to earn a net profit margin of 4% which will equate to a $29.3 billion net profit in 2015. “After many years of hard work and restructuring, the airline industry on average is finally earning its cost of capital.

This is a significant achievement but it needs to be put into perspective. Firstly, we must recognize that for any other industry, earning the cost of capital is not an extraordinary achievement, rather it is the minimum performance expected.

So airlines will have to generate these ‘normal returns’ regularly to attract the $5 trillion of capital to support the doubling of demand expected over the next two decades.

And secondly, sustainable profitability needs to be widespread. Over half of the industry’s profit this year is expected to be generated in North America.

Some airlines are doing very well. But for many, keeping revenues ahead of costs is still a real struggle where success is anything but guaranteed,” said Tony Tyler, IATA’s Director General and CEO. “The World Financial Symposium provides a forum for experts to analyze the challenges to attaining long-term financial stability so that aviation can continue to provide the connectivity that drives the global economy,” said Tyler.

Symposium highlights will include a keynote address by Luis Gallego, CEO of Iberia and the CFO panel will be moderated by Michael Bell, Partner – Aviation, Aerospace & Defense, Spencer Stuart, with participation from: . Ernique Dupuy, CFO, IAG .

Alex Mbugua, CFO, Kenya Airways . Daniel Ho, CFO, Qatar Airways Other topics to be discussed at WFS include: risk management, cyber security; improving airline credit ratings; the impact of the New Distribution Capability on revenue accounting; modernizing the agency distribution network; taxation management; and the financial and operational aspects of mergers and acquisitions.

The popular CFO Summit also will return for a second edition; it is open to senior financial executives from airlines, business partners and key suppliers.



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