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Wizz Air expects leap in Budapest business

Hungarian low-fare airline Wizz Air expects passenger numbers on Budapest flights to rise 25% to 1.25 million in 2010, CEO József Váradi said.

Wizz Air, which has six hubs, including Budapest, expects to carry 10 million passengers in 2010, up from 7.8 million in 2009. This year the airline will add four Airbus 320 aircraft to its fleet, bringing the total number to 34.

Wizz Air controls 36% of the low-fare airline market in Central and Eastern Europe. In Hungary, it controls 48% of the market, but its market share is expected to rise to over 50% in 2010, Váradi said. He noted that the airline carries more people between Budapest and London than either British Airways or Hungarian national carrier Malév.

Wizz Air has operated from cash flow for four years and it needs no external financing, Varadi said, answering a question. A possible acquisition would not fit into Wizz Air's business philosophy, as a different type of fleet and a different professional structure would “dilute” Wizz Air's successful business model, Váradi said. (MTI - EConews)