2018 was Shannon Airport busiest year this decade.
Passenger numbers increased to over 1.86 million which is up 6.5 percent on last year. Overall it represents a growth of 33 percent for Shannon Airport since separating from the DAA, this upward trend has been consistent for the past six years. UK and transatlantic routes were the best performers, both rose 7 percent each.
Last year, the airport had six airlines flying to seven transatlantic destinations which is its highest amount since 2001. Home to the longest runway in Ireland, Shannon had 25,566 take offs and landings.
These figures were released as part of Shannon Group plc’s results for the year gone by which also recorded a positive twelve months for Shannon Heritage and Shannon Commercial Properties.
924,718 visitors came to Shannon Heritage operated sites in 2018 which is its highest ever and an improvement of 4.3 percent, the figure is double that of its 2012 equivalent. Its visitor attractions generated 253,000 bed nights, supported 840 direct and indirect jobs and generated an economic value of €28 million to the Irish economy in 2018 Shannon Heritage invested over €1 million in capital investment projects during the year.
For Shannon Commercial Properties, the previous year marked the completion of the €40 million first-phase of its ongoing investment programme at Shannon Free Zone. Occupancy rates have doubled to 94 percent in the space of five years. Over 150,000 sqft of renovations of new builds took place while investments on key projects totalled €15.6 million.
Matthew Thomas, CEO of the Shannon Group stated it “was a really positive year for Shannon Group. As a primary catalyst for economic growth for the West of Ireland and beyond, we fully understand that our improved business performance stimulates economic benefits both regionally and nationally. Shannon Group’s activities support 46,500 jobs annually. When we grow, the economy grows and 2018 was our best year collectively across the Group since its formation.
“We are set on an ambitious course, investing aggressively in our businesses to drive further growth in the years ahead. In tandem with this, we are fully committed to the National Planning Framework ambitions and have put in place measures to play our part in helping Government deliver on its promise of generating 75% growth outside of the capital by 2040.”
Chairperson of the Shannon Group, Rose Hynes remarked, “Each division of the Group, Shannon Airport, Shannon Heritage, Shannon Commercial Properties, performed very well in 2018 despite often very challenging and uncertain commercial conditions. We are determined to build on our successes to date and to maximise the opportunities in each of our businesses. As a very significant business in the regional and national economy, we are committed to working in partnership with all our stakeholders to ensure a very vibrant future for Shannon Group and our region.”