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Shares of Malaysian low cost carrier AirAsia could potentially rise by another 19 percent, even as the airline reported a 30 percent fall in first quarter net profit, one analyst said Friday, shortly before AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes told CNBC's "Squawk Box" he was confident on earnings in the coming quarters.
Ahmad Maghfur Usman, Asean transport and logistics analyst at Nomura, told CNBC's "The Rundown" that he maintained a "buy" rating on AirAsia with a target price of 3.72 ringgit ($0.87) per share. The company's shares was trading at around 3.13 ringgit ($0.73) on Friday morning.
"I wouldn't say the results were disappointing … AirAsia actually displayed the best results among all the listed carriers that I cover in Asean, that's why I'm still very positive on the stock and moving forward, there are cost saving initiatives that they have planned for so this should bode well for the upcoming quarters, " he said.
He added that AirAsia's long haul flights to Haiwaii, due to launch next month, will also be a key profit driver for the group.
Fernandes said he is confident that the company can deliver a better report card in the coming quarters.
"We're seeing a much better environment. Some of our competitors are cutting costs, they're raising fares," he said.
"We're also driven by very good results in the Philippines and Indonesia, these were two laggards for us before … and India is doing much better than expected so all the guns are moving in the right direction."
On Thursday, Asia's top budget airline reported net profit for the first quarter fell to 615.8 million ringgit ($144 million) from a year ago, and revenues rose 31 percent to 2.2 billion ringgit.
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