London Heathrow airport’s operator has generated its first adjusted full-year pre-tax profit since the onset of the pandemic, a figure of £38 million ($48 million).

The operator is attributing the achievement to a strong fourth-quarter performance. Its adjusted net profit was £6 million.

Heathrow’s results are the first full-year figures since new chief executive Thomas Woldbye took over as chief executive.

“We delivered much-improved service for our customers, and managed to turn a small profit after three consecutive years of losses,” he says. “That’s a great platform to build on.”

But he states that, as a result of cuts to airport charges imposed by the Civil Aviation Authority, the company will “have to pull every lever” to become more efficient, and make “tough choices” on where to invest.

Heathrow-c-Heathrow Airport

Source: Heathrow Airport

Heathrow handled over 79 million passengers in 2023

Heathrow generated revenues of £3.69 billion for the period, while passenger numbers recovered to 79.2 million. It is aiming for a record level of 81.4 million this year.

Our balance sheet remains strong, with gearing below pre-pandemic levels,” says the company, adding that it has £3.8 billion of liquidity.

It states that a “refreshed” business strategy is being finalised, which will be disclosed in the next few months.

Heathrow’s operator is seeking to improve passenger experience and operational resilience, with upgrades to 146 security lanes part of a £1 billion security investment programme, while it is also planning to replace the Terminal 2 baggage system.