The Fraport Group met expectations for the 2012 business year by achieving growth in passenger traffic and positive development of its key financial figures. A total of almost 100 million passengers – advancing 2.9 percent to 99.4 million passengers – used Fraport’s five majority-owned airports.
At its Frankfurt Airport home base (FRA), the number of passengers grew by 1.1 million to 57.5 million in 2012, up 1.9 percent year-on-year. Revenue climbed by €70.8 million to €2.44 billion, while Group EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization) rose by €48.4 million to €850.7 (up six percent). Major investment projects completed recently – above all, the new Runway Northwest and A-Plus terminal expansion – led to increased depreciation and financing costs.
As expected, the Group result before minority interest could only be increased slightly by €0.8 million to €251.6 million (up 0.3 percent year-on-year).
Commenting on the 2012 business year, Fraport AG’s executive board chairman Dr. Stefan Schulte said: “Overall, our company developed well during the 2012 business year, and we met expectations. Compared to many other German and European airports, Frankfurt Airport performed well in a difficult environment – and gained more than one million passengers. Thanks to the investments Fraport has made at FRA, we have built a strong foundation for the future. This provides us with the necessary growth reserves and secures our connectivity, reliability and high service level for increasing our competitiveness.” A dividend of €1.25 per share will again be recommended at the upcoming Fraport AGM (Annual General Meeting) on May 31, 2013.
Fraport’s Retail and Real Estate business segment contributed to the positive development of the company’s financial figures, particularly because of the growth in net retail revenue per passenger at FRA. Benefiting from the inauguration of the A-Plus terminal expansion with its 12,000 square meters of retail space, this indicator rose from €3.17 to €3.32 per passenger in 2012.
In the Aviation business segment, the growth in passenger figures and higher revenue from airport fees resulted in an increase in both revenue and segment EBITDA. At the same time, depreciation and financing costs have risen noticeably now that the new runway has been operating for the entire year and because of the newly inaugurated Pier A-Plus – thus resulting in a decline in the EBIT (earnings before interest and tax).
The Ground Handling business segment registered a drop in revenue and results compared to 2011, due to the decline in cargo and MTOWs (maximum takeoff weights) – both particularly impacted by the nighttime curfew at FRA as well as the difficult overall economic situation. In the Group’s most personnel-intensive business area, a collective wage agreement in the public service visibly impacted segment results, as seen in the form of increased labor costs.
Continuing favorable development of the Group’s international airport business led to positive results from the External Activities and Services business segment. Along with its FRA home airport, Fraport has a majority shareholding of at least 50 percent in four international airports (Antalya in Turkey, Lima in Peru, Burgas and Varna in Bulgaria), as well as minority stakes and management contracts at eight other airports around the globe. Fraport’s airport portfolio is set to expand further.
Despite the satisfactory development during the last business year, Schulte emphasized that the European air transport industry is currently marked by economic and structural challenges: “The macro-economic environment will also remain challenging in 2013. The sector-specific burdens resulting from the planned European Emissions Trading System (ETS) and the German air transportation tax have a damping effect on aviation demand. This, in turn, leads to airlines reducing their flight offerings. However, we essentially expect stable passenger figures at Frankfurt Airport during the current business year,” explained Schulte.
In 2013, Fraport’s CEO expects FRA’s passenger volume to be at about the same level as in the previous year, revenue to increase by up to five per cent, and EBITDA to reach about €870 million to €890 million. The Group result is expected to be lower than for the previous year, due to the continuing rise in depreciation and financing costs