IAG shares have taken-off this morning...
International Airlines Group (IAG) has enjoyed a stronger than expected start to 2017.
The group which owns British Airways, Aer Lingus, and Iberia recorded a 9.7% increase in its operating profit before exceptional items, rising to €170m.
This was IAG's strongest-ever first quarter performance - its total revenue intake rose to €4.93bn.
Its share price rose by almost 5% this morning following the release of the results.
Willie Walsh, IAG Chief Executive Officer, said: "We're reporting an operating profit of €170 million before exceptional items which is up from €155m compared to last year. This is a record performance in the first quarter, traditionally our weakest quarter, with the improving trend in passenger unit revenue continuing.
"The impact of currency exchange was €32m in the quarter due to the translation of sterling profit into euros.
"In March we launched LEVEL, our new long-haul low-cost airline brand, which starts flights from Barcelona to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Punta Cana and Buenos Aires in June. It's already been extremely successful with sales running well ahead of expectations."