enjoys winter of content as losses lighter

'‹The owner of Leeds-based leisure airline'‹ said its annual profits will be ahead of market expectations following lower than anticipated winter losses.
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​Airlines usually make a loss over the winter period which they recoup in the summer.​

Dart Group added that forward bookings in ​its​ ​l​eisure ​travel business for summer 2017 are ​“​satisfactory​”​.

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The group said that although it is still early in the leisure travel booking cycle​ ​it expects to meet market expectations for the year to March 2018.​

It said this view is based on current forward bookings and the recent launch of new operating bases at London Stansted and Birmingham airports, ​​

​The group said that ​trading​ ​at its ​distribution ​and logistics business​​ Fowler Welch is promising as it focus​es​ on developing new business opportunities.

The company recently bought four Boeing 737-800NG ​aeroplanes worth over £300m as it gears up for growth in its leisure business.

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Dart Group said the four ​new​ ​planes will be delivered between August 2018 and January 2019​.

The new planes will help it to meet the anticipated growth in its leisure travel business and will also be used for planned fleet replacement.

The firm has announced plans to create 1,000 jobs this year with the recruitment of new pilots, cabin crew and engineers.

The roles will be spread across the country with 135 in Yorkshire.

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The new jobs are being created due to the anticipated surge in demand in 2017 as it handles more passengers.

Last September, which is based at Leeds Bradford Airport, announced the launch of flights and holidays from London Stansted Airport.

It now operates from nine airports and now has a foothold in the South of England.

Chief executive Steve Heapy, told journalists at the time that it was “an incredibly exciting chapter in our history as it marks the day we bring our family friendly formula to the south of England and become a truly national brand”.

​The ​g​roup ​said it ​will publish its ​preliminary results for the year ​to March ​31 on July ​13.