Under the effect of the Covid-19 pandemic, which cut its passenger traffic by 60% and damaged the global aviation sector, airport manager Groupe ADP suffered a heavy net loss of 1.17 billion euros in 2020 .
The company, which manages the Parisian airports of Roissy-Charles de Gaulle and Orly, in particular, saw its turnover fall by 54.5% compared to 2019, to 2.14 billion euros, a- it detailed in the evening of Wednesday February 17. Its stabilized cash flow should, however, allow it “To calmly consider the year 2021”, despite the continuing pandemic.
The drop in revenue is in line with the range previously mentioned by ADP and the consensus of analysts compiled by data provider Factset. On the other hand, the net loss is greater than expected: it was notably aggravated by the downward revision of the value of international assets and by provisions for a departure plan.
Witness to the pressure that will continue to be exerted on air transport, still affected by the closure of borders, the group has lowered its traffic forecasts at its Paris airports for 2021: it expects to reach between 35% and 45% of that of 2019, the last full year before the pandemic, against a previously mentioned range of 45% to 55%.
Internationally “On the other hand, we are counting on a group traffic target of around 45% to 55% in 2021 compared to 2019 traffic. We are definitely counting on the dynamism of the activity of our concessions and other assets”, said the group’s deputy chief financial officer, Philippe Pascal, during a press conference call. ADP manages more than twenty devices around the world.
“The traces of a brutal and unprecedented crisis”
The road will be long to find the activity before the health crisis. The group continues to believe that “2019 traffic will only return in a range between 2023 and 2027”, said Pascal.
Cash side, “We hardly burn cash anymore”, he added, saying he was determined to achieve in 2021 and 2022 a trajectory of“Debt under control”. At the end of December 2020, the group’s net debt reached 7.48 billion euros against 5.25 billion a year earlier – the latter having borrowed on the markets to face the crisis.
2020 results “Bear the traces of a brutal and unprecedented crisis”, But “Also record the exceptional efforts of the group” to face it, added Pascal, mentioning the deployment of a drastic savings plan of 668 million euros.
This plan, including a partial closure of infrastructure, including some passenger terminals, has helped maintain a positive gross operating surplus, at 168 million euros, he said. The turnover per passenger had remained almost stable in 2020, despite the very sharp drop in attendance.
ADP announced the signing in December of a collective contractual termination agreement setting at 1,150 the maximum number of voluntary departures – of which 700 will not be replaced – and making it possible to avoid forced departures. In total, the group, of which the State is the majority shareholder, will part with 11% of its pre-crisis workforce.