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Fraport Calls 2013 Goals Challenging on Airline Cutbacks

Fraport AG, the operator of Frankfurt airport, said its forecast for 2013 is becoming increasingly challenging to meet after passenger numbers at Europe’s third-largest hub fell.

Fraport is “operating in an ever more challenging environment,” making financial goals for this year “increasingly demanding,” Chief Executive Officer Stefan Schulte said in a statement today.

The company reiterated its forecast that earnings before interest and taxes, depreciation and amortization this year will total 870 million euros ($1.16 billion) to 890 million euros, while net income will fall. Second-quarter Ebitda rose 11 percent from a year earlier to 243.5 million euros, beating the average 240.1 million euros of seven analyst estimates estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

Airlines in Europe are cutting flights and switching to bigger planes in an effort to stem losses amid competition from low-cost carriers and Persian Gulf airlines. Passenger numbers in Frankfurt fell 1 percent in the first half, meaning a turnaround is needed for Fraport to reach a goal of matching last year’s traffic figure.

Net retail sales per passenger rose 10 percent to 3.56 euros in the first six months. Fraport has said it plans to increase the measure toward 4 euros this year.

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