Vinci’s third-quarter revenue jumps thanks to increased traffic

– Vinci posted a sharp rise in quarterly revenue on Tuesday, with the French infrastructure group citing a continued recovery in airport passenger numbers and motorway traffic.

As coronavirus-related travel restrictions eased in parts of the world, highway and airport traffic rebounded, pushing the group’s quarterly revenue to 16.70 billion euros ($16.65 billion ), up 26% on an actual basis from a year earlier.

Europe’s biggest construction and concessions company said traffic levels on its motorways were higher than before the pandemic in 2019 despite rising fuel prices.

“In October, light vehicle traffic was impacted by the shortage of gasoline in France,” said Grégoire Thibault, head of investor relations at Vinci.

“But now the situation is, let’s say, settled (…), so I don’t rule out a catch-up effect,” he added.

Vinci also benefited from an accelerated recovery in passenger traffic at almost all of its airports.

“Momentum has been particularly strong in Europe, South America and the Caribbean,” the group said in a statement. “Passenger numbers have returned to levels equal to or above those reached in 2019 at several airports, including in Portugal, Serbia and the Americas.”

“We are still seeing strong demand from passengers despite the increase in ticket prices (…) so the fourth quarter should also be well oriented,” said Thibault as Vinci Airports forecasts that the number of passengers for 2022 will be d around 70% of its 2019 level.

The group, however, pointed out that passenger growth was weaker in Asia, where travel restrictions were still in place in several countries in the region – including China – at the end of the quarter.

The company’s order book stood at 57.4 billion euros at the end of September, allowing Vinci to confirm its previous forecasts of annual net income higher than that of 2019.

($1 = 1.0032 euros)

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