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July 18, 2019, 4:04 a.m. EDT

EasyJet backs forecast, reports 11% sales rise

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By Anthony O. Goriainoff

EasyJet PLC (EZJ.LN) on Thursday backed its earnings guidance for fiscal 2019 as it reported an 11% rise in revenue for the third quarter, after flying more passengers and benefiting from the later Easter holidays.

The budget airline--which lost its place in the FTSE 100 index last month after a six-and-a-half year stint--said total revenue for the three months ended June 30 was 1.76 billion pounds ($2.19 billion), compared with GBP1.6 billion in the same period last year. Ancillary revenue was GBP374 million, compared with GBP328 million in 2018.

The airline said revenue per seat at constant currency rates rose 0.7% to GBP61.22, in line with expectations.

EasyJet said that it expects headline pretax profit--which strips out exceptional and other one-off items--for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30 to be between GBP400 million and GBP440 million, compared with GBP578 million in fiscal 2018. The company said this was in line with market expectations.

Analysts forecast consensus for headline pretax profit of GBP430 million, taken from FactSet and based on 12 estimates.

EasyJet said it expects headline pretax profit for the year to be affected by a GBP5 million adverse hit due to foreign-exchange movements.

EasyJet added that Peter Bellew has been appointed Chief Operating Officer. He was previously COO at Ryanair Holdings PLC (RYA.LN).

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