Pegasus Airlines' long-term credit rating was upgraded from B+ to BB- by Fitch Ratings on April 14 and from B to B+ by S&P Global Ratings (S&P) on May 23, following the airline’s strong financial performance in 2022.
Fitch and S&P announced their credit ratings with “Negative Outlook", mirroring that on the current macroeconomic conditions. The international credit rating agencies have also revised the credit rating of the senior unsecured debt issued by Pegasus Airlines accordingly.
In the reports published by Fitch and S&P, the rating upgrade is attributed to Pegasus Airlines' strong operational and financial results in 2022 and the subsequent quarterly period. Among global airline operators, Pegasus Airlines recorded the highest EBITDA margin with 34.1% and the lowest non-fuel unit cost (CASK, non-fuel) with 2.18 euro cents, based on public data.
In 2022, Pegasus Airlines increased the number of passengers it carried by 34%, and grew its revenue by 139%, year-on-year. The airline also achieved €69 million EBITDA and a 15.1% EBITDA margin in the first quarter of 2023, making it highest first quarter performance in the company's history.
Barbaros Kubatoğlu, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of Pegasus Airlines, commented: “Despite 2022 starting with challenges for the aviation industry due to the Omicron variant and a backdrop of macroeconomic and geopolitical tensions, it ultimately became a year of rapid travel demand recovery compared to the pandemic period.
“The year continued with a strong summer season and presented a favourable operating environment for airlines that were well-prepared for this resurgence. In 2022, which we started operationally and financially well prepared, we achieved the best financial performance in the global aviation sector, by managing our operations effectively in parallel with robust demand. It is of great significance to us that our 2022 performance, which continues with the same success in the first quarter of 2023, is recognised by independent rating agencies, and that this performance is also emphasised as sustainable.” – TradeArabia News Service