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Wizz Air shares gain as budget carrier posts first annual profit since pandemic

Investing.com -- London-listed shares in Wizz Air (LON:WIZZ) climbed on Thursday after the budget carrier reported its first annual profit since the COVID-19 pandemic and said it was preparing for a strong summer travel season.

The low-cost airline has been boosted by resilient passenger demand, which has helped to mitigate the impact of supply chain disruptions stemming from mandatory engine inspections as well as flight cancellations due to geopolitical tensions in the Middle East.

Although these "external challenges" are expected to persist into its current fiscal year, the Hungary-based company said it sees "positive booking momentum" heading into the summer.

"As we enter [the 2025 fiscal year], demand for air travel remains robust, with no sign of abating in the near term, supporting a higher yield environment as capacity across the whole industry remains constrained," said Chief Executive József Váradi in a statement.

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Wizz Air expects to post full-year net income of between 500 million euros to 600 million euros at current exchange rates, while unit revenue is projected to increase in the high single digit compared to the prior year. Analysts at RBC Capital Markets said a upbeat outlook for pricing was underpinning the guidance.

For the year ended on March 31, net profit came in at 365.9 million euros, up from a loss of 535 million euros a year ago. A company-compiled consensus had seen the figure at 351 million euros.

"We expect 2024 [results and the 2025 estimate] to be a supportive environment to grow fares, and also see attractions in cost leadership among European airlines," the RBC analysts said in a note to clients.

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