Air India Express Tuesday reported a 35 per cent slump in net profit at Rs 169 crore in the year ended March 2019, mainly on account of higher costs, even as it remained profitable for the fourth straight year.
In 2017-18, the carrier had posted a net profit of Rs 262 crore.
The low-cost arm of national carrier Air India recorded over 16 per cent growth in revenues at Rs 4,202 crore in 2018-19. In the year-ago period, the same stood at Rs 3,620 crore, it said in a release.
"The net profit earned in the last fiscal is particularly significant as the aviation sector has had to face many challenges, including high input costs. The unit cost incurred on fuel alone, increased by around 35 per cent during this period.
"The impact of this on profitability was huge, as more than 40 per cent of the airline's operating cost were incurred on fuel," Air India Express CEO K Shyam Sundar said.
According to him, the profit was mainly due to greater utilisation of assets and resources like aircraft, manpower and materials.
Air India Express carried 4.36 million passengers last fiscal, higher than 3.89 million people flown in the same period a year ago.
"Average daily aircraft utilisation rose to 13.3 hours (in 2018-19), from the 12.7 hours in the previous year, which in turn led to an increase in capacity," the release said.
With a fleet of 25 Boeing 737-800 NG planes, the airline operates from 13 international and 20 Indian destinations.