Qatar Airways Reports Record Profit Of $1.54 Billion, Highest In The Industry

Qatar Airways Reports Record Profit Of $1.54 Billion, Highest In The Industry

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The past couple of years have been the toughest in the history of the airline industry. As the world slowly starts to return to (a new) normal, we’re seeing many airlines once again return to profitability. However, Qatar Airways’ results are on a completely different level.

Qatar Airways reports $1.54 billion profit

Qatar Airways has reported a record profit of $1.54 billion for the 2021-2022 financial year (April 1, 2021, through March 31, 2022), which is 200% above its highest annual historical profit. Not only is this a record profit for the airline, but it’s also the largest profit of any airline worldwide that has published results so far for the past financial year.

During this record-breaking year, the airline saw overall revenue increase to $14.4 billion. Not only was that up 78% compared to the previous year, but it was 2% higher than pre-coronavirus. Passenger revenue increased by 210% compared to the previous year, which shows what a big revenue source cargo was in the previous financial year. That’s despite the fact that cargo capacity increased by 25% during this past financial year, so that has continued to be a strong point for the airline.

Qatar Airways’ EBITDA margin for the financial year was 34%, or $4.9 billion. As it’s described, this was “due to streamlined, agile and fit-for-purpose operations across all business areas.”

For context, in the previous financial year Qatar Airways reported a net loss of $4.1 billion, though “only” $288.3 million of that was an operating loss (while the rest consisted largely of one-time charges).

Here’s how Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker describes the company’s performance:

“This year Qatar Airways Group celebrates a quarter of a century of history since its relaunch, whilst maintaining strong performance and growing profitability. Our commitment to providing the greatest choices to our passengers, maintaining the highest levels of safety in the industry and earning trust have made us proudly become the airline of choice for millions of travellers around the world. We have pursued every business opportunity and left no stone unturned as we aimed to meet our targets.”

Cargo continues to be a strength for Qatar Airways

My take on Qatar Airways’ financial results

There are a couple of points I wanted to touch on here. First of all, it has been impressive to see the direction Qatar Airways has taken during the pandemic. The airline operated the largest continuous route network in the world during the pandemic, and truly offered one-stop service between so many places when other airlines were grounded.

I also truly think Qatar Airways is emerging stronger from the pandemic than just about any airline, and that the airline is really well positioned going forward. That’s especially true in comparison to Gulf rivals. Huge respect to the Qatar Airways management team on this success, because it’s no small feat.

Next, when it comes to Gulf carrier financial results, people are often skeptical. After all, these airlines are government owned, and the major US carriers spent years trying to discredit the Gulf carriers (fortunately that’s not the case anymore).

So, can these results be trusted? I’d say yes, but perspective is important. Of course economics are a bit different when the government owns not just the airline, but also the airport, and on top of that has the ability to provide financing at a scale and at rates that other airlines may not have access to.

For that matter, US airlines have benefited very nicely from some government subsidies in the past couple of years, and in some quarters that payroll support was the difference between airlines losing or making money.

The one thing I can’t quite figure out is how Qatar Airways grounding its A350 fleet is being accounted for among all of this. Qatar Airways has an ongoing dispute with Airbus, and as a result has a large portion of its A350 fleet grounded. While Qatar Airways is on a roll, I’d say the carrier’s dispute with Airbus is the single biggest challenge it faces for long-term growth, given how reliant Qatar Airways now is on Boeing.

Qatar Airways & Airbus are in quite the dispute

Bottom line

Qatar Airways has reported a record profit of over $1.5 billion, which is the largest profit in the carrier’s history, and also the biggest profit of any airline that has reported it so far for the past financial year. Huge congrats to Qatar Airways on this achievement, as the airline really is emerging from the pandemic stronger than before.

What do you make of Qatar Airways’ financial results?

Conversations (38)
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  1. Experienced Traveller Guest

    They were the only airline during the pandemic flying to certain locations, they got organised quickly and helped many people return home . The world remembers thigs like this

  2. Stuart Guest

    I guess this will have carriers globally scratching their heads and wondering. "It wasn't supposed to be like this" they must be saying. A carrier that actually delivers arguably the world's best inflight product, offers a good balance within programs for redemptions, treats loyalty well, trains it's staff well, innovates constantly where the customer is involved, operates a world class hub with exceptional lounges, and manages its operations well. Hmm. All the other airlines? "We...

    I guess this will have carriers globally scratching their heads and wondering. "It wasn't supposed to be like this" they must be saying. A carrier that actually delivers arguably the world's best inflight product, offers a good balance within programs for redemptions, treats loyalty well, trains it's staff well, innovates constantly where the customer is involved, operates a world class hub with exceptional lounges, and manages its operations well. Hmm. All the other airlines? "We thought by lowering ourselves to the level of Greyhound we could please stockholders...isn't that all that matters?" I guess not. In the end, QR proves that everyone can win actually.

  3. SullyofDoha Guest

    @Ben, What you have not taken into account is that part of the Qatar Airways Group is a VERY IMPORTANT SBU called QDC which is the company with the SOLE RIGHTS to import and wholesale PORK and ALCHOHOL to the ENTIRE COUNTRY. That's right, they have a COUNTRY WIDE MONOPOLY on the sale of pork and booze. Pretty hard not to do well with that advantage!

    1. John Guest

      Yes, I imagine the market for pork and alcohol must be absolutely huge down there in Qatar(!) Must be raking in trillions of $$$$$ from the millions of bacon-munching, beer-swilling Qataris and all their guests(!!) Yup, that's the reason for QR's profit.

    2. SullyofDoha Guest

      I guess you've never looked at the demographic make up of expats living and working in Qatar...

    3. John Guest

      Are you SERIOUSLY claiming that expats alone made QR's profits simply by consuming biblical amounts of bacon & beer during covid?
      Don't bother waiting for Reuters or Bloomberg to return your calls. You'll never get that market analyst gig. But hey, Enron may be looking...

    4. Stuart Guest

      Laughing at this knowing well the little refrigerator closets hidden at the stores that sell Pork in the ME. Never anyone in them and it's the size of your home closet. Yeah, I'm sure huge demand for pork and alcohol by the maybe 10% there that consume either is massive and raking in outrageous profits for QR.

    5. Eskimo Guest

      @Stuart

      You mean the closet that W. was looking for that is hiding WMDs?
      LOL, so W. was actually looking for his breakfast, bacons and mimosas.

  4. SMR Guest

    I wonder what QR pays for fuel at their home base ?:). Maybe just maybe that’s why they made 1.5 billion !

  5. Khan Atiq ur Rehman Guest

    I used to travel on Emirates only but when Covid started in East Africa.
    I was sitting at the airport and I was informed that Emirates cancelled its flight and we all passengers were dumped there without any choice.
    It was Qatar air the only carrier which was operating.
    From that day I Salute Qatar air for there service.
    It is almost more than 2 years me my family we only...

    I used to travel on Emirates only but when Covid started in East Africa.
    I was sitting at the airport and I was informed that Emirates cancelled its flight and we all passengers were dumped there without any choice.
    It was Qatar air the only carrier which was operating.
    From that day I Salute Qatar air for there service.
    It is almost more than 2 years me my family we only use to fly on Qatar air.
    I pray for there success in future.
    Very nice air port and inflight services.
    No air line can beat or compete with their sincerity.

  6. Hobbs Guest

    QR ruined every other airline for me. The flight attendants introduce themselves, greet you by name, chat you up, explain the menu, make your bed. Even the lounge is ridiculous. It's crazy the amount of attendants at the Al Mourjan Business Lounge. There's one assigned to the bathrooms, showers, lockers, someone is standing there to help you every 100ft. And this was during the pandemic with DOH a ghost town. Any Asian destination, it's QR for me.

  7. anonymous Guest

    A lesson for the careless American airlines that sell a bag of peanuts for at least 7 dollars.

  8. Luc Guest

    I also attribute recent success to having non restrictive connections in Doha due to Covid. Can’t tell you how many flights I booked thru there because they didn’t require silly requirements to connect, like downloading apps, etc

  9. Adi89 New Member

    The point about QR being able to secure favorable financing due to government ownership isn't really fair. US airlines weren't only supported by subsidies, they were bankrolled by loans provided by the federal government, and that financing (and the implicit government guarantee against liquidation) allowed them all to stay afloat until they were able to refinance those debts at illogically favorable rates on the bond markets during the period where the Fed had dropped the...

    The point about QR being able to secure favorable financing due to government ownership isn't really fair. US airlines weren't only supported by subsidies, they were bankrolled by loans provided by the federal government, and that financing (and the implicit government guarantee against liquidation) allowed them all to stay afloat until they were able to refinance those debts at illogically favorable rates on the bond markets during the period where the Fed had dropped the base rate to near zero and was pumping the market with tons of QE.

    There's just no comparing different airlines across regions given such differing support they get in various forms.

  10. Bennet Guest

    The worst! They have profits and no awards ability? How dare they

  11. Murtuza Guest

    Congratulations!
    Their hard work and dedication of staff is appreciated.
    Best Airlines…

  12. Rav Guest

    Qatar takes the top spot. That speaks for itself. Enough said.

  13. Eskimo Guest

    Now that's how you run a laundromat.

  14. T- Guest

    To all of you Qatar haters! Eat the facts! Now all you can say is you don't believe it. Cry me a river please. Despite Qatar's A350 issues they still come out on top! Keep making up reasons to hate them. Fact speak much louder than all of your senseless words.

    1. ConcordeBoy Diamond

      ....you missed a spot on that boot there.

  15. Donna Diamond

    I don’t believe anything coming from that airline leadership.

  16. Jetiquette Guest

    Yeah, I'm calling BS. Record profit with 350s grounded? Doubtful.

    1. Fred Guest

      Qatar reigns supreme. That's how you run an Airline everybody. Period.

    2. Experienced Traveller Guest

      Qatar have leased aircraft from other airlines , for example Cathay Pacific

  17. D3kingg Guest

    Wow you can read the news. Everyone has internet and TV.

    Qatar is doing so well that they don’t need to free up award space. American can service all of your reward space needs now with their recently launched JFK DOH service.

    1. Stuart Guest

      I easily booked last minute three weeks ago and got Qatar F from CDG-BKK via Doha for 90K AA. It's out there, you just have to dig and be flexible. But really, that's everyone.

    2. Experienced Traveller Guest

      What is 90K AA please in real money ?

  18. Dennis singh Guest

    Hopefully they’ll release some award space. Been pretty slim for the next 6 months Jfk to doh and beyond.

  19. uldguy Diamond

    Well, that helps to explain why they no longer offer $2,500 RT C-class flights from the US to points in Africa. Qatar business class fares have sky rocketed and finding award space on them is a challenge too. I'm sure the upcoming World Cup has something to do with everything going on, but it will be interesting to see how they do next year without the World Cup boost.

    1. Andy Diamond

      Agree, but it's a systemwide effect. Pre-pandemic, they were usually the cheapest offer - now they are usually one of the most expensive ones ... This not only ex-US, but also from Europe or Asia-Pacific.

    2. Art_Czar Member

      Earlier this month, they sent emails offering $3,000 RT C-class flights from the US to points in Africa and Asia. I guess like all major corporations their price-points account for current global inflation and high oil prices.

  20. AJ69 Guest

    Well done to Qatar. It is an airline that kept many countries (eg Australia) connected to the world when their own ‘national carrier’ abandoned citizens overseas for years.

    Airlines that kept flying are highly profitable, whilst others that stopped can’t even pick up the phone within hours or deliver baggage on time

  21. Steven E Guest

    United Airlines!!!! Seriously - one of the worst carriers on the planet - however congratulations to Qatar as they operated , as you say throughout the pandemic and the service I used was always top in every aspect

  22. Alan Guest

    Strongly disagree- I think United will emerge from Corona as the most-transformed/strongest airline, and is on track to be the greatest airline in world history.

    1. shoeguy Guest

      United is emerging as a much better airline than it ever has been, but it will continue to face challenges that are attributed to its network. The Newark hub is a gold mine but it is also a huge operational mess and will perpetually drag down the airline's performance. UA also competes with one or more US airline with a sizable presence in many of its hub markets, which will continue to exert pressure on...

      United is emerging as a much better airline than it ever has been, but it will continue to face challenges that are attributed to its network. The Newark hub is a gold mine but it is also a huge operational mess and will perpetually drag down the airline's performance. UA also competes with one or more US airline with a sizable presence in many of its hub markets, which will continue to exert pressure on yields. I think the airline that will emerge from the pandemic the most transformed and not in a good way is Delta.

    2. Jan Guest

      Skytrax 6-star ranking incoming for UA.

  23. Mak Guest

    Easy to make a "profit" when the government that owns you takes your major liabilities off your books. Qatar has and will forever lose money on every flight, and I for one am happy to suck up the largesse and enjoy my share of the subsidies - its not like Qatar and its royal family will do anything better with the money than give it to flyers, and they would probably otherwise do much worse with it.

    1. SHAH RAJESH Guest

      BUSINESS CLASS FARE IS TOO MUCH.CONCESSATION MAY BE GIVEN TO SENIOR CITIZEN TRAVELLING.

Featured Comments Most helpful comments ( as chosen by the OMAAT community ).

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Rav Guest

Qatar takes the top spot. That speaks for itself. Enough said.

2
T- Guest

To all of you Qatar haters! Eat the facts! Now all you can say is you don't believe it. Cry me a river please. Despite Qatar's A350 issues they still come out on top! Keep making up reasons to hate them. Fact speak much louder than all of your senseless words.

2
Art_Czar Member

Earlier this month, they sent emails offering $3,000 RT C-class flights from the US to points in Africa and Asia. I guess like all major corporations their price-points account for current global inflation and high oil prices.

2
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