Kuwait’s Jazeera Airways Group has reported a net loss of KD2.8m ($10m) in 2010, an improvement on its 2009 loss of KD8.2m.

The company closed the fourth quarter of last year with a profit of KD2m and recorded a third quarter profit of KD4.4m.

“We’ve had our best second half in history,” says Marwan Boodai, chairman of the group. “The second half earnings and the drastic shrinking of our losses compared to 2009’s results are a direct result of the measures we implemented in mid-2010 as part of our business turn-around plan.”

In February 2010, the group acquired Sahaab Aircraft Leasing for KD25.6m, which immediately began generating revenues. By the end of the first quarter, more capacity arrived in the local market which affected Jazeera’s profits. The turn-around plan was implemented in May and was designed to realign the business with the market and bring the company back to profitability (MEED 16:2:10).

The plan involves asset redeployment, staff reductions, cost management, network and market realignment and enhanced commercial offering.

The plan led to the improved profits in the third and fourth quarters of 2010, which was the first time that it had closed two consecutive quarters with positive results.

The airline was established in 2005 and is listed on the Kuwait Stock Exchange. Jazeera Airways Group currently operates 11 Airbus A320 aircraft that are divided between Jazeera Airways and its leasing business Sahaab Aircraft Leasing.

Jazeera Airways carried 1.3 million passengers in total in 2010, which was about 15 per cent of total traffic at Kuwait International airport.