Executive Board Recommends Dividend of 90 Euro CentsPreliminary Figures – Subject to Supervisory Board Approval Fiscal 2005 was another banner year for the Fraport Group, with revenues rising by 4.6 percent to €2.1 billion.
Speaking at the company's annual financial press conference, Fraport AG's executive board chairman Dr. Wilhelm Bender emphasized that Fraport's record sales topped the €2 billion mark for the first time because of three essential factors: higher revenues from security services, an increase in traffic fees due to rising maximum takeoff weights (MTOWs) at Frankfurt Airport (FRA), as well as extraordinary results from car parking and retailing at the company's FRA home base.
The revenue growth achieved in 2005 positively affected EBITDA. Climbing by 6.1 percent to €547.5 million, EBITDA again grew disproportionately faster than revenues, due to strict cost management. The increase in net income for the year was even more marked: With €161.5 million, the profit for the year exceeded the 2004 level by 17.4 percent. In view of this gratifying business development, the executive board will recommend to the Annual General Meeting (AGM) a dividend payment of €0.90 per share at an unchanged payout ratio of about 50 percent. This is €0.15 or 20 percent more than in the previous year.
Fraport's Frankfurt Airport achieved a new passenger record in 2005, when a total of about 52.2 million passengers used the airport – 2.2 percent more than in the previous record year of 2004. Airfreight tonnage handled at FRA rose 8.1 percent to 1.9 million metric tons – also a new record figure. Together, the Fraport Group's airports served approximately 72.1 million passengers last year, 6.4 percent less than in 2004 due to the traffic decline at Antalya Airport in Turkey. All other shareholdings of the Fraport Group developed very positively during the past twelve months, some showing even double-digit growth rates. Cargo tonnage for the Group's airports rose by 7.6 percent to about 2.4 million metric tons.
The number of staff employed by companies in the Fraport Group grew by about six percent to nearly 28,000 people in 2005. In percentage terms, employment at Frankfurt grew even stronger. Fraport employed 17,830 people in Frankfurt at year end 2005 – 7.4 percent more than one year ago. "This development sets a clear signal in these ongoing economically difficult times," said Dr. Bender. "In our age of globalization, air transportation is a growth industry offering job opportunities for many people – especially in Germany."
For the 2006 business year, Fraport expects the long-term growth trend in the aviation industry to continue. The company anticipates passenger figures at Frankfurt Airport to grow by about two percent. Fraport assumes that both volume growth and the increase in airport charges (which went into effect at the beginning of 2006) will have a positive impact on the Group's revenues in the current fiscal year. Furthermore, higher income from security services and retailing is to be expected for 2006.
A corresponding climb in EBITDA and a noticeable increase in annual profits can be expected. "Our optimism regarding results is based on Fraport's ongoing efforts to improve efficiency, whereby we are striving to ensure a disproportionately lower increase in staff and non-staff costs," said Dr. Bender. For 2006, Fraport plans to keep the payout ratio of dividends stable at about 50 percent.
All figures stated for the 2005 fiscal year are preliminary until March 27, when Fraport AG's supervisory board will approve the 2005 Statement of Accounts. On March 28, Fraport's Annual Report 2005 will be available in printed form and also online via the Internet (www.fraport.de). Fraport AG's AGM will be held on May 31 at the Jahrhunderthalle in Frankfurt-Hoechst, Germany.
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