The Emirates Group has announced its 31st consecutive year of profit and steady business expansion.
This is just as the Emirates Airlines Premier Partner and the Official Airline of Expo 2020 Dubai has unveiled the design and visitor experience concepts of its ultramodern pavilion for the six month mega-event.
In its 2018 annual report just released, the Emirates Group posted a profit of AED 2.3 billion ($ 631 million) for the financial year ended March 31, 2019, down 44 per cent from last year. The Group’s revenue reached AED 109.3 billion ($ 29.8 billion), an increase of seven per cent over last year’s results. The Group’s cash balance was AED 22.2 billion ($ 6.0 billion), down 13 per cent from last year mainly due to large investments into the business, including significant acquisitions and payment of last year’s AED two billion ($ 545 million) dividend.
In line with the overall profit, the Group declared a dividend of AED 500 million (US$ 136 million) to the Investment Corporation of Dubai for 2018-19.
Speaking on the development, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates Airline and Group, said “2018-19 has been tough, and our performance was not as strong as we would have liked. Higher oil prices and the strengthened US dollar eroded our earnings, even as competition intensified in our key markets.
The uptick in global airfreight demand from the previous year appears to have gone into reverse gear, and we also saw travel demand weaken, particularly in our region, impacting both dnata and Emirates.
“Every business cycle is different, and we continue to work smart and hard to tackle the challenges and take advantage of opportunities.
Our goal has always been to build a profitable, sustainable, and responsible business based in Dubai, and these principles continue to guide our decisions and investments. In 2018-19, Emirates and dnata delivered our 31st consecutive year of profit, recorded growth across the business, and invested in initiatives and infrastructure that will secure our future success.”
In 2018-19, the Group collectively invested AED 14.6 billion ($ 3.9 billion) in new aircraft and equipment, the acquisition of companies, modern facilities, the latest technologies, and staff initiatives, a significant increase over last year’s investment spend of AED 9.0 billion ($ 2.5 billion).
The Emirates Pavilion which will be guided by the three themes of Expo 2020 Dubai: mobility, opportunity and sustainability, was designed to reflect the dynamic lines of aircraft wings ready to take flight. The 26 slanted architectural fins that cover the entirety of the pavilion will hold over 800 metres of LED lights to create multi-sensory effects and movement across the structure, showcased by light-shows during every night of Expo.