ANA predicts record RM21b net loss for 2020/21

ANA predicts a record net loss of RM20.4b for the fiscal year to March 2021, compared to RM1.1b in net profit the previous year

TOKYO • Japan’s biggest airline ANA Holdings Inc yesterday forecast a record US$4.87 billion net loss for this financial year and announced a major restructuring as the pandemic hammers the global aviation industry.

The company said its first-half (1H) net loss came to ¥188.4 billion (RM7.54 billion) — a sharp fall from the ¥56.7 billion in profit it logged during the same April-September period last year.

“There has been a significant decline in passenger demand, which has been severely affected by the immigration restrictions around the world and the voluntary restraints on movement within Japan that have accompanied the spread of Covid- 19,” ANA said in a statement.

“While demand is gradually recovering in the 2H, it is not expected to return to the level of the previous year,” it added.

Revenue plunged 72% to ¥291.8 billion for the six months.

ANA predicted a record net loss of ¥510 billion for the fiscal year to March 2021, compared to ¥27.6 billion in net profit the previous year.

“This year’s financial results are expected to be very tough,” CEO Shinya Katanozaka told reporters.

“Of course we won’t give up for this fiscal year, and we will continue to make efforts to increase revenue and profits,” he added.

“We want to move into the black next year at any cost by doing everything we can.”

Local media reported that the company plans to slash 3,500 jobs through a hiring freeze, while the CEO pledged to “protect the jobs of 46,000 employees”.

ANA had already announced it would halt recruiting for next year. About 3,000 workers reportedly retire every year.

The airline said it plans to retire 35 aircraft in 2020, mostly Boeing-777 models used for long-haul flights.

Among a raft of cost-cutting plans, the firm said it hoped to send more than 400 of its employees on secondment to other companies by next spring.

The jobs staff will take up include call centre work, hotel concierge, reception and secretarial positions, the airline said.

Its domestic rival Japan Airlines Co Ltd, also severely hit by the pandemic, is expected to log a loss of around ¥230 billion for the year to March 2021, according to the Nikkei business daily.

The company is scheduled to announce financial results later this week. — AFP