Heathrow Airport raises its full-year forecast on soaring passenger numbers

Rebecca Smith
Heathrow is planning for out of this world full-year results
Heathrow is planning for out of this world full-year results (Source: Getty)

Heathrow has upgraded its 2017 full-year forecasts after a rise in passenger numbers as well as cargo demand at the London airport.

Read more: Heathrow owner Ferrovial puts the brakes on UK investment due to Brexit

The figures

The UK's biggest airport posted a 17.4 per cent rise in pre-tax profits to £27m in the three months ending in March.

Revenues grew from £642m to £655m.

After a record passenger year in 2016, Heathrow said traveller numbers for the first quarter edged up two per cent to 17.2m for the period, from 16.8m.

Adjusted earnings before interest, depreciation, tax and amortisation (Ebitda) rose four per cent.

Why it's interesting

The London airport got the go-ahead for expansion last October, marking a significant milestone for Heathrow's plans for future growth. And it has been keen to bang the drum about the airport's importance for showing Britain remains open for business in a post-Brexit climate.

It said today that an expanded Heathrow will secure Britain's "export-led future" with up to 40 new long-haul connections. The first expansion planning consultation launches later this year.

Earlier this month, Heathrow's largest shareholder Ferrovial said it had frozen investment in the UK as it waits, like many others, to see how Brexit will pan out. Rafael del Pino, the chairman of the group, said the firm was putting on the brakes for the time being when it came to future M&A.

What the company said:

John Holland-Kaye, chief executive of Heathrow, said: "When Heathrow succeeds, Britain benefits and 2017 is shaping up to be our best year ever. Our new domestic airline Flybe is already driving more choice for passengers on Scottish routes and surging trade is boosting jobs across Britain."

Britain is plotting a new course in the world and expanding Heathrow is more important than ever to ensure its success. It will make our country the best connected in the world and secure our export-led future. We’re getting on with delivering it and look forward to opening Britain’s new runway in 2025.

Read more: Flybe launches Heathrow flights as new Scotland routes take off

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