Following the conclusion of its third Annual General Meeting (AGM), which was held today in Sharjah, the Board of Director of Air Arabia announced that the assembly approved the distribution of a cash dividend of 10 per cent of the company’s share capital.
During the Annual General Meeting, the assembly approved the report of the company’s auditors for the financial year ending December 31, 2009. The assembly also approved the balance sheet and profit and loss accounts of the company for the same period.
The first and largest low-cost carrier in the Middle East and North Africa, Air Arabia’s net profit for the 12 months ending December 31, 2009, stood at AED 452 million, sustaining 2008 strong performance of AED 454 million (excluding exceptional items). For the full-year 2009, the company registered a turnover of AED 2 billion, decline of 4.5 per cent from AED 2.066 billion recorded in 2008.
The airline served 4.1 million passengers in 2009, an increase of 14.2 per cent compared to 3.6 million passengers in 2008. In the 12 months ending December 31, 2009, Air Arabia’s average seat load factor – or passengers carried as a percentage of available seats – stood at an extremely impressive 80 per cent.
Finally, the assembly discharged the directors and auditors of the company from liability for the financial year ending December 31, 2009, and appointed auditors for the company for the next fiscal year in order to fix their remuneration.
“We are glad to share Air Arabia’s success with our shareholders by distributing a 10 per cent cash dividend of the company’s share capital for the second consecutive year,” said Sheikh Abdullah Bin Mohammad Al Thani, Chairman of Air Arabia. “Last year represented serious challenges to the global aviation sector and led to the industry’s highest loss ever. With the pressure on yields increasing significantly due to continuous overcapacity and volatile oil prices associated with the world’s financial crisis, the year 2010 remains uncertain.
“In 2010, Air Arabia will continue to focus on its efficient low cost operations while utilising its assets as well as providing our customers with the most competitive fares, more destinations and best value for money services.”
Ranked first on the Top Performing Companies chart as the best low-cost carrier globally in a study conducted in 2009 by Aviation Week magazine, Air Arabia currently serves 60 destinations across the world from its hubs in Sharjah and Casablanca. The region’s first and largest low-cost carrier has also been named "Low-Cost Carrier of the Year" by a number of leading aviation bodies.
Last year, Air Arabia announced the signing of a joint venture agreement with the Travco Group to launch a new low-cost carrier based in Egypt, serving the Europe, Middle East and Africa markets and representing the carrier’s third hub after the UAE and Morocco. Operations at the third hub in Egypt are anticipated to begin in the second half of 2010.