Financial Performance

dnata's financial growth

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An Overview

In its 57 years of operation, 2015-16 has been dnata’s most profitable yet, crossing AED 1 billion (US$ 287 million) profit for the first time. Building on its strong results in the previous year, dnata's revenue grew to AED 10.6 billion (US$ 2.9 billion). dnata’s international business now accounts for more than 64% of its revenue.

This substantial revenue increase of 16% was achieved through organic growth, and bolstered by the first full year of Stella Group operations which dnata Travel acquired in October 2014 of the previous financial year, and airport operations in Australia which dnata fully acquired from its 50% joint venture partner Toll in March 2015.

Building on last year’s record levels of investment, dnata continued to lay the foundations for future growth by investing AED 585 million (US$ 159 million) into developing its people, facilities, technology and new acquisitions.

Revenue from dnata’s UAE Airport Operations, including aircraft and cargo handling increased moderately by 5% to reach AED 2.5 billion (US$ 685 million) due to significant impact from the 80-day DXB runway closure. Dubai World Central now accounts for 36% of dnata’s cargo handling activities in Dubai.

Highlights during the 2015-16 financial year include the acquisition of new international businesses: Aviapartner’s cargo business at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol; Airport Handling SPA in two airports in Milan; and RM Ground Services in Brazil, extending dnata’s global footprint to the Americas for the first time.

Airport Operations

Revenue from dnata’s UAE Airport Operations, including aircraft and cargo handling increased by 13% to reach AED 2.9 billion (US$ 777 million). The strong revenue rise accounts for the effect of the 80-day runway closure at Dubai International airport (DXB) which dampened revenue growth in the previous year.

In line with revenue growth, the number of aircraft handled by dnata in the UAE increased 12% to 211,000, whereas Cargo handling dropped by 6% to 689,000 tonnes reflecting the cargo industry’s ongoing malaise. Dubai World Central now accounts for 24% of dnata’s cargo handling activities in Dubai. During the year, dnata began operations at DXB’s new concourse D, with 3,000 staff trained to help customers transition to the new facilities.

dnata’s International Airport Operations division grew revenue substantially by 32% to AED 2.1 billion (US$ 571 million), on account of increasing business volumes and newly acquired businesses in the Netherlands and Brazil. The number of aircraft handled increased significantly by 63% to 178,000, and Cargo noted a substantial growth of 46% to 1.4 million tonnes of handled goods. These results speak to the benefits reaped from the previous years’ investments in new international cargo handling facilities particularly in the UK.


dnata’s Catering business accounted for AED 1.9 billion (US$ 514 million) of its total revenue, down 7% and mainly on account of a significant weakening of major currencies against the US dollar. The inflight catering business uplifted more than 57 million meals during the year, a marginal decline of 1% on account of lower volumes in Italy.


Revenue from dnata’s Travel division has seen a strong rise of 34% to reach AED 3.3 billion (US$ 901 million) and it now represents the largest business segment in dnata by revenue contribution. This is mainly attributed to business growth in the UK through the full year impact of Stella Group acquired October 2014, and the integration of the Group’s Destination & Leisure Management activities in Dubai, and travel distribution unit Emquest. The underlying total transaction value (TTV) of travel services sold substantially increased by 20% to AED 11.7 billion (US$ 3.2 billion).