Frankfurt airport operator Fraport boosted third-quarter earnings by a third from a year ago to 317 million euros ($406 million) as increased passenger traffic offset lower freight volumes at Europe’s second largest cargo hub.
This boosted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization by 3.5 percent in the first nine months of the year by 5.7 percent to $874 million, outpacing a 3.5 percent gain in revenue to $2.4 billion.
Cargo traffic at Frankfurt was down 8.1 percent from the first three quarters of 2011 at around 1.56 million metric tons as a slowing European economy aggravated the impact of a night flight ban imposed at the end of October 2011, which mainly affected freighters.
Cargo throughput at the group’s majority-owned airports – Frankfurt, Lima, Peru; Antalya, Turkey; and Bourgas and Varna in Bulgaria -- declined 7.3 percent year-over-year to 1.74 million tons.
Fraport chief executive Stefan Schulte said the company faces a difficult winter and “will have to manage our business very closely.” But the decline in cargo traffic will bottom out, he said.
Fraport forecast three years of rising profit bolstered by a fourth runway at Frankfurt, which is increasing passenger numbers.
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