Fraport Q2 EBITDA 149.5 mln eur from 137.7 mln, confirms FY guidance UPDATE


FRANKFURT (XFNews) - German airports operator Fraport AG said second-quarter EBITDA grew to 149.5 mln eur from 137.7 mln eur, slightly above analysts' expectations, as it reiterated its full-year outlook.

Second-quarter net profit grew to 45.5 mln eur from 40.6 mln, while sales reached 521.4 mln eur, up from 496.9 mln in the same quarter last year.

Analysts polled by dpa-AFX had forecast second-quarter EBITDA of 145 mln eur, sales of 528.54 bln and net profit of 47.34 mln.

Fraport said the sales were boosted mostly by higher airport traffic charges and more proceeds from security services amid a "steady increase in aviation security requirements at European airports".
Fraport said it still expects full-year net profit to increase "significantly" year-on year and sales to rise by more than 3 pct.

It expects a rise in EBITDA that is "slightly larger than revenue growth", while passenger numbers at Fraport's core Frankfurt airport are still seen rising 3 pct this year.

It said, however, it expects "substantially" lower sales in the fees charged for military traffic, particularly in the fourth quarter, as the US Air Force plans to move from Frankfurt to other cities at the end of this year.

It also expects revenues for airport access fees to fall after a ruling by the European Court of Justice requiring changes to the charges. It expects revenues to fall at its airport in Antalya, Turkey, after the opening of a competing terminal in April.

Fraport chief executive Wilhelm Bender said the company is determined to continue implementing its cost-cutting programme and called on German trade union ver.di to support the airports operator's catalogue of measures.

He also warned that the company will be facing "challenges" in 2006, including the implementation of EU requirements on safety, "probable price reductions" in the ground handling contract with its core customer Deutsche Lufthansa AG, and "substantially higher investments" for modernising and expanding its Frankfurt airport.

Fraport said first-half sales at its aviation segment rose 13.7 pct to 334.7 mln eur, with first-half EBITDA rising 23.1 pct to 79.4 mln eur.

At its Retail and Properties segment, first-half sales fell 0.9 pct to 179.9 mln due to lower airport access fees. On the whole, however, it said retail sales per passenger increased from 2.21 eur to 2.25.

EBITDA at the segment was flat year-on-year at 144.2 mln eur. The firm's Ground Handling segment generated first-half sales of 302.8 mln, up 2.9 pct year-on-year, with EBITDA doubling to 26.5 mln.

Fraport's External Activities segment -- which covers all of its investments outside of its core Frankfurt hub -- posted first-half sales of 184.9 mln eur, up 6.9 pct, while EBITDA slumped 37.3 pct to 9.6 mln, impacted by the opening of a competing terminal in Antalya.

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