Norwegian boss 'not at all satisfied' with airline's losses

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The boss of Scandinavian airline Norwegian has said he is "not at all satisfied" with its latest financial results.

But chief executive Bjorn Kjos insisted the carrier is "far better positioned for 2018" as it continues to rapidly expand its fleet and routes.

The low-cost airline made a net loss of €30.8m in 2017, according to a statement from the airline today.

Earnings before interest, taxes and depreciations (EBITDA) was €6.2m.

The loss was driven by "significant" costs related to increased fuel prices, leasing and staff. Excluding fuel, costs increased by 6pc.

Revenue at the airline was up 19pc year-on-year at €3.1bn, which came in ahead of expectations, according to Davy analysts.

During the year a total of 32 new aircraft entered Norwegian’s fleet, contributing to a production growth of 25pc.

The load factor at the airline was unchanged at 88pc, while more than 33 million passengers chose to travel with the airline in 2017, an increase of 13pc compared to previous year.

While Kjos said he was “not at all satisfied”, he noted that the year had been one of global expansion for the company driven by new routes, high load factors and fleet renewal.

Going forwards, the airline said it was "far better positioned," with stronger bookings and a better staffing situation.

Major investments had also been done in 2017 to prepare for future growth, the airline said.

"Norwegian is far better positioned for 2018, with stronger bookings, a growing network of intercontinental routes complementing our vast European network and not least, a better staffing situation," Mr Kjos said.

Earlier this month the airline announced that it had add a second daily service to its Dublin-New York route from April for the summer season.

It's also increasing its summer service from Shannon, doubling the frequency of flights to Providence, Rhode Island, from two to four a week, and adding a third weekly flight to New York.

Norwegian said it was adding the additional flights due to the level of demand from both leisure and business travellers for the services.