The FINANCIAL -- Turkish Airlines total revenue increased significantly during the first half of the year approximately by 30 percent compared to the same period of last year, reaching USD 6 billion. Thus, having displayed a remarkable growth performance in 2017, Turkish Airlines managed to increase both passenger and cargo revenue in the first half of 2018.
During the first half of the year, Turkish Airlines managed to increase net operating profit up from USD 17 million to USD 258 million, due to the increasing demand and unit revenues despite the increasing fuel prices.
In the first half of the year, EBITDAR (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, amortization and rent), which is used as a cash generation indicator, stood at USD 1.28 billion, with a 38 percent increase. EBITDAR margin improved by 1,5 percentage points to 21,5 percent. This value is the highest first half EBITDAR value that Turkish Airlines, that continues to be one of the most profitable airlines in the sector, has so far achieved.
During the first half of the year, total Load Factor climbed 4,3 percentage points to 80.4%, recording the highest load factor in Turkish Airlines history for the first half. During the same period, increase in total number of passengers carried, capacity (available seat kilometer) and demand (revenue per kilometer) was 18 percent, 9 percent and 16 percent, respectively, over the same period of last year. Turkish Airlines carried more than 35 million passengers during this period. According to International Air Transport Association (IATA) first five month figures, the global aviation sector realized capacity growth of 6 percent and demand growth of 7 percent.
Turkish Airlines, which continues to strengthen its identity as a leading global airline with its ever-expanding flight network and the implementation of other significant investments, currently operates flights to 49 domestic and 255 international destinations, a total of 304 destinations in 122 countries, along with Freetown, Samarkand, Krasnodar and Moroni, which have launched within this year. The fleet of Turkish Airlines, one of the youngest and most modern in the world, operates a total of 325 aircraft, comprising 215 narrow body, 92 wide body and 18 cargo aircraft, as of today. Investing in the most advanced and environmentally friendly new generation aircraft, Turkish Airlines aims to reach a fleet of 500 aircraft by 2023.
Targeting to become one of the world's largest air cargo carriers, Turkish Cargo forms a wide corridor from Asia to Africa and Europe to Latin America. In the first half of 2018, Turkish Cargo managed to increase not only the amount of cargo carried by 28 percent, compared to the same period of last year, up to approximately 660 thousand tons, but also the cargo revenue by 35 percent, up to USD 784 million.
Despite the strong global competitive environment, economic and political uncertainties in the nearby region and severe operating conditions due to the fuel price and currency fluctuations, Turkish Airlines, having around 52 thousand employees with its subsidiaries, continues to generate successful results and will continue its trend in the sustainable growth path as the global brand of Turkey.