2007/082006/072005/062004/052003/042002/03Key Documents

Dart Group PLC Company Reports

Interim Results 2018

Interim Results 2017

Chairman's Statement


I am pleased to report on the Group's trading performance for the half year ended 30 September 2018 in our two businesses, “Leisure Travel” - incorporating Jet2.com, our award-winning airline and Jet2holidays, our acclaimed ATOL licensed package holidays operator - together with “Distribution & Logistics”, comprising Fowler Welch, one of the UK's leading logistics providers.

Summer 2018 has proven to be a particularly strong season for our Leisure Travel business, as demand for both our flight-only offering from Jet2.com and our higher margin package holiday product from Jet2holidays proved buoyant throughout.  

Revenue in our Distribution & Logistics business also grew by 7% to £88.9m (2017: £83.0m), as management continued to focus on developing existing and new business opportunities.

As a result, Group operating profit increased by 68% to £350.1m (2017: £208.6m) and Group profit before foreign exchange revaluation and taxation increased by 68% to £339.4m (2017: £201.9m).

However, increased losses are to be expected in the second half of the year as we continue to invest in additional aircraft and marketing, together with the increasing cost of retaining and attracting wonderful colleagues in readiness for further flying programme expansion at all our operating bases in the summer 2019 season.

In the first half, the Group generated increased net cash flow from operating activities of £423.8m (2017: £257.2m), driven by the Leisure Travel trading performance.  Total capital expenditure of £132.1m (2017: £90.4m) included the purchase of further new Boeing 737-800NG aircraft, investment in the long-term maintenance of our existing fleet, the purchase of a 5th flight simulator for our training centre in Bradford and infrastructure projects at Fowler Welch.

New loans totalling £132.7m (2017: £109.0m) were drawn down, as the Group secured commercial debt funding for the purchase of its new aircraft.  As a result, the Group’s cash and money market deposit balances increased in the first half by £389.0m (2017: £242.1m) to £1,397.6m (2017: £931.1m), which included advance payments from Leisure Travel customers of £520.7m (2017: £376.8m) in respect of their future flights and holidays.  Net cash, stated after borrowings of £937.4m (2017: £574.2m), was £460.2m (2017: £356.9m), an increase of 29%.

Basic earnings per share increased to 186.15p (2017: 119.47p). In view of the outlook for the full year, the Board has decided to pay an increased interim dividend of 2.8p per share (2017: 1.5p).  The dividend will be paid on 4 February 2019 to shareholders on the register at 28 December 2018.

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