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SAS airlines report fourth consecutive full-year net loss in 2011

(Xinhua)

09:14, February 09, 2012

STOCKHOLM, Feb. 8 (Xinhua) -- Scandinavian airline group SAS on Wednesday reported its fourth consecutive full-year net loss in 2011, mainly due to its subsidiary Spanair's bankruptcy application.

The net loss of the group amounted to 1.69 billion Swedish kronors (about 0.25 billion U.S. dollars) last year, according to its annual fiscal report.

The SAS launched 22 new routes in 2011 and the number of passengers increased by 2 million, up by 7.8 percent compared with 2010, the reported said.

However, the group was still unable to achieve positive earnings due to Spanair's filing for bankruptcy in the end of 2011 and the subsequent necessary charge of 1.7 billion Swedish kronors, said SAS president and CEO Rickard Gustafson in the report.

Also due to Spanair's bankruptcy, the Scandinavian carrier recorded a net loss of 2.08 billion Swedish kronors in the fourth quarter last year, compared to a profit of 47 million Swedish kronors a year earlier.

"The trend in 2011 was escalating competition in parallel with such factors as weakening economic trends and continued high fuel prices," said Gustafson, adding that SAS still realized healthy growth with the highest customer satisfaction ratings for 11 years.

According to the fiscal report, the implementation of the group's new strategy "4Excellence" was being accelerated, which includes cutting 300 full-time jobs in administration and saving 1 billion Swedish kronors from the SAS trade union. (1 Swedish kronor = 0.15 U.S. dollar)

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