Transat in talks with federal govt. for additional financial aid

Transat in talks with federal govt. for additional financial aid

MONTREAL — Transat reported a $114.3 million loss for Q1 2022, however the company is staying the course and proceeding with its recovery plans as travel picks up for the months ahead.

Transat’s Q1 revenue totalled $202.4 million, up from $41.9 million year over year.

“While we were in the midst of a strong recovery, with November and December results matching our targets, the emergence of the Omicron variant brought our sales to a temporary halt between mid-December and early February. Subsequently, and particularly after the easing of restrictive measures at the borders, bookings picked up again, for both winter and summer, which augurs well for the coming months,” said Annick Guérard, President and CEO of Transat.

“We therefore intend to continue with our initial strategic plan and stay the course for the summer. Our recovery plan has allowed us to recall approximately 500 employees since the start of November and we are delighted to see that many of our customers in Canada and Europe are eager to travel after two years of the pandemic,” said Guérard.

She noted that Transat’s codesharing agreement with Porter Airlines, announced earlier this week, points to Transat’s progress towards its longer term strategic goals.

Guérard added: “The deferral of certain terms of our financing under the Large Employer Emergency Financing Facility (LEEFF), as well as the securing an additional $43.3 million for refunding travellers, will facilitate our recovery following the resurgence of the pandemic.

“In the short term, our priority is to protect our cash flows and access the liquidity needed to get through this period of uncertainty. Although we are in recovery, the impacts of COVID-19 are still being felt and the geopolitical situation is constantly changing.”

Guérard also said that Transat is in talks with the Canadian government for more financial aid.

“As we will remain in a cash burn situation for the coming months, we are also in discussions with the federal government for additional funding,” she said.

Looking ahead, Transat’s planned capacity for summer 2022 is 91% of 2019 levels. For Transat’s transatlantic program, the planned capacity in 2022 is 78% of 2019 levels. To sun destinations program, it’s 96%. Across the border, with Transat’s recently announced new flights from Montreal to Los Angeles and San Francisco, capacity is set to quadruple. There’s also a 9% capacity uptick planned for domestic flights.