Abu Dhabi-based Etihad reports record quarterly profit ahead of potential IPO

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Etihad Airways PJSC reported a “record” profit in the first quarter of 2024 amid surging demand for travel, as the United Arab Emirates’s national airline prepares for a possible initial public offering.

The Abu Dhabi-based carrier posted a 526 million dirham ($143 million) profit after tax in the three months ended March, up from 59 million dirhams a year earlier, it said in a statement Thursday.

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Passenger traffic grew 41 percent to 4.2 million in the same period, the airline said.

Bloomberg News reported this month that banks had been picked for a potential IPO that could raise as much as $1 billion, according to people familiar with the matter.

Owned by sovereign fund ADQ, Etihad competes for transfer traffic with Dubai’s Emirates and Qatar Airways.

An IPO of Etihad will create the first publicly-traded major Gulf hub carrier and come amid a rebound in international travel following the pandemic.

The airline reported a five-fold increase in annual profit in March as it expanded its network to tap growing demand for travel.

Etihad is focused on improving its efficiency and growing its margins, Chief Executive Officer Antonoaldo Neves said in the statement.

The carrier is adding new routes and increasing frequencies, and will have 34 percent more flights this summer compared with 2023.

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