DALLAS – LATAM Airlines Group has posted a US$145m profit for Q2 2023, its second consecutive profitable quarter. The group also expects “record” net earnings for the full year.
Boosted by increased passenger numbers and lower fuel costs, the company saw revenues increase by 20.2% from the same period last year to US$2.68bn. Passenger revenues grew by 32.9% owing to continued travel demand and the recovery of LATAM’s international routes.
Indeed, the carrier announced several new routes during Q2 2023 as part of the joint venture (JV) with Delta Air Lines (DL). The JV now connects over 200 North American destinations DL serves to more than 120 South American destinations LATAM operates.
LATAM will also relaunch services from Sao Paulo (GRU) to Johannesburg (JNB) from September 2. As part of the launch, the carrier has signed a new interline agreement with South African regional carrier Airlink (4Z), giving access to over 40 destinations across Africa.
Cargo revenues, however, dropped by 23.2%, caused by a softening of yields due to increased capacity. This was despite its cargo affiliates adding two new cargo routes, Miami (MIA)-Guayaquil (GYE) and MIA-San Jose Dos Campos (SJK).
The results have helped boost confidence in the company with investors after it emerged from bankruptcy protection in November 2022 with a US$8bn reorganization plan. Roberto Alvo, CEO of LATAM Airlines Group, said, “LATAM has been working systematically and with a long-term focus. Our financial results are the result of the combination of an effective business strategy, an attractive value proposition for customers, cost discipline, a robust network in the region, a globally-leading punctuality worldwide, and a solid balance sheet.”
The group has now raised its 2023 forecast for adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, amortization, and restructuring or rent costs (EBITDAR) to between US$2.35bn and US$2.50bn, from US$2bn to US$2.2bn previously estimated. Revenue forecasts for the year have also been raised to between US$11.3bn and US$11.6bn, up from the US$11bn-US$11.5bn previously forecast.
LATAM Airlines Group is the largest in South America, created following the merger of Chile’s LAN with Brazil’s TAM in 2012. It currently has a fleet of ‘239 Airbus narrow-body aircraft, 54 Boeing wide-body aircraft and 18 Boeing cargo freighters, totaling 311 aircraft,’ according to the group’s Q2 2023 press release. It has also converted several of its Boeing 767 passenger airliners into dedicated freighters and has one conversion remaining.
Featured Image: LATAM Brasil (PT-MUH) Boeing 777-300ER MAD LEMD. Photo: Adrian Nowakowski/Airways.