Singapore Airlines loss narrows to $302m in first-quarter this year

Photo: Singapore Airlines's Facebook page

Singapore Airlines Ltd (SIA) on Thursday posted a S$409 million ($302 million) firstquarter loss, narrower than a year earlier, helped by a strong air cargo market and no major impairments.

The airline forecast passenger capacity to reach 33% of pre-pandemic levels in the second quarter, and said it would serve at least 50% of locations it did before by the end of September.

The airline, like Hong Kong rival Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd, lacks a domestic market and is solely reliant on international travel at a time when most borders remain closed.

SIA carried 132,600 passengers in the month of June, an improvement on its June 2020 figures but a 96% fall from the same month two years earlier, before the pandemic hit.

It filled just 16.1% of seats in June, with its flights heavily reliant on cargo for revenue at a time when the freight market is strong.

The company posted a record S$1.1 billion loss in the first quarter a year earlier.

Revenue in the just-ended quarter came in at S$1.30 billion, up from S$851 million a year earlier.

Cargo flown revenue grew 32.4% and the company said demand fundamentals for the business remained strong, even though fresh pandemic-related restrictions in parts of the world could cause short-term uncertainty.

SIA, unlike rival national carriers in Southeast Asia, still has a healthy cash balance to help it get through a period of low travel. It recently raised S$6.2 billion of convertible bonds underwritten by its largest shareholder, state investor Temasek Holdings.

The airline also said 98% of active pilots and cabin crew have been vaccinated.

Reuters

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.