BAA, the owner of London's Heathrow and Stansted airports, sharply narrowed 2010 losses from the previous year as cargo surged.
The company, owned by Spain's Grupo Ferrovial, booked pre-tax losses of $507 million compared with $1.3 billion in 2009 on a 4.9 percent growth in revenue to $3.3 billion.
Cargo traffic through BAA's six UK airports and Naples, Italy, rose 14.2 percent year-on-year to just over 1.7 million metric tons.
Heathrow, Europe's fourth largest cargo hub and 12th in the world, boosted traffic 15.2 percent to 1.15 million tons and Stansted, a freighter and express hub, was up 10.4 percent at just under 203,000 tons.
"We delivered a robust financial performance in 2010, despite the volcanic ash, snow and strikes that affected major airports across Europe and North America," said CEO Colin Matthews.
BAA likely will have to sell Stansted and either Glasgow or Edinburgh airports in Scotland after the UK's Supreme Court last week rejected its attempt to challenge an order by the competition regulator to dispose of the airports.
BAA booked a loss of $447 million on the enforced $2.4 billion sale of London Gatwick airport to Global Infrastructure Partners in 2009.
-- Contact Bruce Barnard at firstname.lastname@example.org.