Air Arabia announced that its revenues increased to Dh3.8 billion for 2015. More than 7.6 million passengers flew with the airline in 2015, an increase of 12 per cent compared to 2014. The Sharjah-based airline declared a net profit of Dh531 million for 2015, a 6.2 per cent decline over previous year's profit of Dh566 million. The low-cost airline's board proposed a dividend distribution of nine per cent of share capital, which is equivalent to 9 fils per share. The share price of the Dubai-listed airline declined to Dh1.25 on Sunday while 548,086 shares changed hands. The average seat load factor - or passengers carried as a percentage of available seats - in 2015 stood at 79 per cent.
"2015 was a year of growth and achievement for Air Arabia as our expansion strategy, efficient operations and tight cost controls reinforced our market-leading position," Air Arabia chairman Shaikh Abdullah bin Mohammad Al Thani said in a statement. The chairman added: "The impact of low oil prices continues to have its effect on the wider global economy, while pressure on yields and geopolitical uncertainty continued to weigh on the aviation industry. Despite these challenges, Air Arabia once again delivered a strong set of numbers and remains well positioned for further growth in 2016." The airline added 23 routes to its network in 2015. It became the first lowcost airline from the Middle East and Africa to enter the Chinese market with the launch of regular non-stop services to Urumqi, the largest city in Western China. The airline also added a fifth international hub with the formation of Air Arabia Jordan and the opening of a fixed-based operation at Amman Queen Alia International Airport. Air Arabia launched Airewards, the first loyalty programme from a regional lowcost airline, in 2015. It offers the same experience that customers associate with Air Arabia, with points based on money spent rather than distance flown. In Q4 of 2015, Air Arabia reported a net profit of Dh59 million, 13 per cent less than the corresponding 2014 figure of Dh68 million. Turnover for the three months ending December 31, 2015, was Dh957 million, compared to Dh924 million in the same period in 2014.