Strict travel restrictions hampered Finnair’s operations
As expected, Finnair’s Q3 result was heavily weighed down by the coronavirus pandemic and the strict travel restrictions especially in Finland. Therefore, the company had to deviate from the previous plans and to continue to operate with a limited network. Capacity (ASK) was down by 87% compared to last year and PLF was 38.7% (-47.5pp). Revenue decreased by ~89% y/y, amounting to EUR 97m vs. EUR 157m/145m Evli/cons. Adj. EBIT was EUR -167m vs. EUR -191m/-179m Evli/cons. By the end of the quarter, Finnair had paid out over EUR 400m of COVID-19 related refunds (some EUR 40m left).
Winter season is expected to remain dark
Due to the prolonged pandemic situation and strict travel restrictions it is likely that the better recovery of air travel isn’t starting anytime soon. Finnair continues to fly with a limited network during the winter season. The company informed earlier that it is aiming to fly approx. 75 daily flights to ~50 destinations during the winter season (~350 flights per day in ‘19). The ramp-up is estimated to start from summer’21. According to the company, comparable operating loss in Q4 will be of a similar magnitude than in Q2 and Q3. The company also expects both, revenue and capacity (ASK) to decrease more than 70% in 2020 compared to 2019. Further, the company raised its savings target to EUR 140m (prev. EUR 100m) starting from the beginning of 2022 (compared to 2019).
“HOLD” with TP of EUR 0.38
Finnair has a fully undrawn EUR 175m revolving credit facility and a EUR 200m short-term commercial paper program, which was unused at the end of September. In addition, the remaining part of the statutory pension premium loan (EUR 200m) can be drawn if needed. We have cut our 20E-21E estimates and expect revenue in 20E to decline by 73% y/y to EUR 850m and adj. EBIT of EUR -606m. We keep our rating “HOLD” with TP of EUR 0.38.
Source: Finwire News.