Colombian carrier ACES has
significantly increased its market share and posted a profit for 2000, in
contrast to the financial difficulties of its planned merger partner Avianca.
Despite increased costs of 35% during
2000, largely stemming from rising fuel prices, currency devaluation and an
inflation rate of nearly 9%, ACES managed to post a positive operating income
of COP2.7 billion ($1.2 million).
On top of operating revenues of $192
million, the sale of aircraft also enabled ACES to generate additional earnings
of $1.8 million to cover its non-operating costs and taxes. Consequently, the
carrier posted a net income of $2.1 million compared with a net loss of $1.9
million in 1999.
During the year ACES’ revenue
passenger kilometre (RPK) traffic increased by over 14% against extra available
seat kilometre (ASK) capacity of 8.4%. This improved load factors by almost
three percentage points, from 55.8% to 58.7%.
ACES recorded a 13.4% increase in
domestic passenger numbers for 2000, helping to increase its market share from
24.9% to 28.8%. Similarly, a 20% growth in passengers on international services
helped ACES increase its market share from 7.8% to 9.1%, while freight
transport grew 15% over the year.
Earlier this year ACES and fellow
Colombian carrier Avianca signed a memorandum of understanding to pursue a
merger, while retaining the brands of both carriers and also that of Avianca’s
regional affiliate SAM Colombia.