BA optimistic despite losses

Key - Tony Dixon
Key - Tony Dixon

British Airways has posted a nine-month operating loss of £86 million.

February 5: UK carrier British Airways (BA) posted a nine-month operating loss of £86 million (2008: operating profit £89 million) to December 31 but remains positive its recent changes are bearing fruit.
Its Chief Executive, Willie Walsh, said: “Those changes, combined with capacity reductions and external spending cuts, mean operating costs are down by 10.5% and show that we’ve adapted quickly to the new business realities created by the global recession. While we are on the right track, we still expect to make record losses this year. Permanent structural change is being introduced in all areas and will return us to sustained profitability.”
The airline actually made an operating profit in quarter 3, “largely as a result of the considerable progress we have made on reducing our costs”, said the airline. Some £300 million of cost savings were made in the year to December from management reductions, Terminal 5 changes, reduced supplier costs, improved engineering productivity, pilot pay changes and improved productivity, cabin crew complement changes and reduced overseas costs. Cabin crew are still unhappy about the changes and a new vote on strike action is expected to be taken shortly.