Wizz Air has set out further cost-saving measures to mitigate the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, including making nearly one fifth of its workforce redundant.
It comes after the budget carrier on Tuesday (14 April) revealed it is currently operating at just 3% of its pre-coronavirus capacity.
The carrier’s chief executive, Jozsef Varadi, its board of directors and senior officers, will meanwhile take a 22% pay cut. Pilots, cabin crew and office staff salaries will be reduced by 14%.
Other savings include furloughing staff, and shedding more than 30 older, leased aircraft over the next three years.
Wizz has opted to recognise the initial impacts of the global pandemic in its 2019/20 full-year results (FY20), with the budget carrier expecting to post underlying net profit for the year to 31 March of €350-€355 million, in line with its guidance from January when it upgraded its full-year profit forecast.
However, with March traffic down more than a third year-on-year and the carrier currently operating little more than a skeletal schedule, Wizz has opted to recognise a €70-€80 million hit for the months of March, April and May – resulting from the effects of Covid-19 – in its 2019/20 figures, rather than carry over the impact into its full-year 2021 balance sheet (FY21).
As a result, Wizz now expects to post statutory net profit of €270-€280 million for FY20. In a trading update, issued on Tuesday (14 April), Wizz declined to offer guidance for FY21 but detailed cash reserves of €1.5 billion as of the end of March.