Improved result thanks to new strategic direction

24. February 2004

The SWISS Group succeeded in improving its result for the 2003 business year compared to that for the previous year. The improvement reflects the initial effects of the restructuring which the company has pursued so vigorously. The downsizing of the network and the fleet and a large-scale reduction in the size of the workforce have given SWISS a significantly more competitive cost structure in difficult markets. Good progress has been made toward achieving a turnaround. However, a number of daunting challenges lie ahead and factors of uncertainty persist.

The operating loss was lowered from CHF 909 million (including start-up costs) a year ago to CHF 497 million as of the end of 2003. After taking restructuring costs of CHF 205 million into consideration, the net result for the year is a loss of CHF 687 million. This compares to a loss of CHF 980 million for the previous year. The net result is significantly better than envisioned in the forecast used during restructuring.

Consolidate revenues for the SWISS Group totalled CHF 4’126 million for the 2003 business year, compared to CHF 4’395 million for the year prior. The decline is materially due to resizing of the company for economic reasons. As of 31.12.2003 the group’s liquidity stood at CHF 503 million.

These preliminary figures are unaudited.

Complete figures will be published on March 23, 2004, and explained in detail at the ensuing media conference. Until that date, the company has no additional comment to make on its figures for 2003.