Global aircraft charter broker Air Charter Service (ACS) reported sales of $1.8 billion (£1.3 billion) for the year ending January 31, 2022, driven by strong growth and record sales across all divisions.

"The company's global presence and diversified business model has proved highly attractive to existing and new customers navigating the travel and logistical issues presented by the pandemic," an official statement said.

The company's cargo division continued to experience huge demand as a result of its Chinese presence (three offices) and ability to source passenger aircraft for temporary use as freighters. "The well-publicised supply chain issues facing so many industries resulted in high demand for air freight but with continued capacity shortage due to the slow recovery of the scheduled passenger market which previously provided between 50-70 percent of global air freight capacity has driven demand towards charter. Whilst it is expected that cargo demand could drop off at some point as the backlog of goods eases, it is impossible to predict either when this will happen or what the fall in demand will be."

ACS's private jet division saw nearly a 40 percent increase year-on-year. This put it at 20% above pre-pandemic levels compared with the estimated 7.5 percent growth in flights for the charter sector as a whole compared to pre-pandemic levels, indicating significant increase in market share. "The increase in long haul charters arranged by ACS's group charter team resulted in revenue growth of 40 percent year-on-year reaching record levels."

"At the end of our previous financial year, we predicted that sales would be extremely difficult to maintain at last year's levels," says Chris Leach, Group Chairman, ACS. "So, for our team to deliver 45 percent growth and turnover of $1.8 billion are incredible achievements and the proudest I have felt in the 32 years since I set up Air Charter Service.

"As for the future, and given the current climate, my only prediction would be unpredictability. The first two calendar months of 2022 have continued at the same pace as 2021 and with what visibility we have we believe this will continue through Q1 at least. In such a turbulent world, inevitably there will be a point where the market could materially shift for any of our three main divisions. However, many of the possible shifts which could potentially impact the results of one division could end up benefiting another. So, our approach has been to invest in strengthening all areas of the business and the benefits of those investments will make us a far stronger business going forward as we prepare for all eventualities."

ACS arranges more than 23,000 charter flights annually.

Read Full Article