Norwegian chief executive officer Bjørn Kjos said the carrier is “not at all satisfied” with the 2017 results – as the carrier revealed a full year net loss of 299 million NOK (-£27.4 million).
In reporting its results, the airline said as it was hit by significant costs related to increased fuel prices, wet lease and passenger care.
Despite the results, Kjos said going into 2018 Norwegian is “far better positioned” with stronger bookings and a better staffing situation and major investments made in 2017 will prepare the airline for future growth.
The company’s total revenue was almost 31 billion NOK (£2.8 billion) – an increase of 19 per cent compared to 2016.
Last year, 32 new aircraft were welcomed into the fleet, contributing to a production growth in ASKs of 25 per cent. The load factor was unchanged at 88 per cent while 33 million passengers were flown in 2017, an increase of 13 per cent compared to 2016.
For the fourth quarter (Q4), the net loss was 919 million NOK. The total revenue was more than 7.8 billion NOK, an increase of 30 per cent from the same period last year, primarily driven by international growth as well as an increased traffic in the Nordics.
Just over eight million passengers flew with Norwegian in Q4, a growth of 12 per cent. The load factor was 85.3 per cent. Norwegian made major investments in Q4 related to training of pilots and cabin crew on both its wide-body and narrow-body fleet to prepare for the growth in 2018.
Norwegian chief executive, Bjørn Kjos said: “We are not at all satisfied with the 2017 results. However, the year was also characterized by global expansion driven by new routes, high load factors and continued fleet renewal.
“Through our global strategy, we contribute to local economic boost and increased employment at our destinations, as well as ensuring that more people can afford to fly – not least between the continents. In 2017, we received several major international customer awards, which would never have been possible without our dedicated colleagues at Norwegian.”
Kjus added: “Norwegian is far better positioned for 2018, with stronger bookings, a growing network of intercontinental routes complementing our vast European network and not least, a better staffing situation. Our major global expansion reaches its peak in the second half of 2018, when 32 of our 42 Dreamliners on order will have been put into service.”