Rapidly growing Turkish low-cost carrier (LCC) Pegasus Airlines continued to slip into the red in the first half of 2014 compared to the year-ago period. It made a net loss of TL17.9 million ($8.2 million), reversed from a profit of TL44.1 million last time.

Sales were up 33% at TL1.3 billion, compared to TL989 million year-over-year. Its share of the Turkish domestic market rose from 26.7% to 28% and its share of the international market grew from 9.1% to 9.8% during the period.

Passenger numbers rose 22% to 9.2 million, up from 7.6 million. Load factor increased fractionally, to 79.4%, up from 79.3% last time.

The first half of 2014 saw a 2% fall in the cost per available seat kilometer (CASK) to €4.06 ($5.42), down from €4.13 for the same period last year. ASKs increased 22.3%.

Pegasus GM Sertac Haybat said the carrier had made effective use of such competitive advantages as its geographical location, flight network and low-cost structure: “We will continue to be one of Europe’s fastest-growing, low-cost airlines in the coming period with our high rate of average daily aircraft utilization and our recent aircraft order to the value of $12.2 billion.

“In an expanding market, we have increased our capacity, while at the same time continuing to increase our market share as we have done in recent years. We have also succeeded in reducing the cost per available seat kilometer by using our aircraft efficiently.”