Annual Report & Accounts

Full reports for the previous ten years

Overview of financial year 2022/23

In June 2023, NATS Holdings Limited (NATS) announced its results for the year ended 31 March 2023.

Flights recovered strongly after the lifting of travel restrictions in March 2022.  NATS handled 2.24 million flights, which was a 75% increase on the prior year. NATS’ planning for recovery, whereby it retained critical skills and delivered simulation training, enabled it to support a safe regeneration and meet all of its safety targets.

NATS reported a profit of £148.5m, with a debt adjusted cash flow of £58.1m (see note 1 above).  As for the prior year, the result includes an assessment of regulatory allowances for the Covid revenue shortfall which are being determined by the CAA’s retrospective reconciliation of revenue and costs.

While the result this year reflects the start of the sector’s recovery after the Covid pandemic, as for the results of the last two years, it is not yet supported by the equivalent level of debt-adjusted cash flow generation.  This is because Covid suppressed flight volumes and income receipts.

NATS expects that, for the regulatory allowances outstanding, the CAA will require their recovery over 10-years from 2023 to support the sector’s recovery. NATS has financed accordingly with borrowings aligned with recovery of these allowances. The final step of NERL’s refinancing was completed during the year, with the issue of a further £145m of bonds repayable in 2033.

In October 2022, the CAA published its initial proposals for the NR23 price control. While the CAA recognises the challenge NATS faced during Covid, NATS in its response has highlighted its concern about material elements of their initial proposals. NATS has reiterated the importance of a price control with appropriate resources to deliver the NR23 plan which supports the increased traffic forecasts and the service customers have requested now and in the future. The CAA’s decision is expected in summer 2023.

Financial & operational highlights

For the year ended 31 March 2023

Financial year ended 31 March 2023 2022
Financial highlights:    
Revenue and regulatory allowances – £m 930.0 749.8
Profit before tax – £m 148.5 8.7
Debt-adjusted cash inflow/(outflow)1 – £m 58.1 (241.1)
Capital expenditure – £m 113.7 100.1
Net debt2 – £m 803.6 849.5
Gearing3 – (%) 52.3% 60.1%
Dividends – £m nil nil
(Loss)/profit before tax by principal operating entity:    
NATS (En Route) plc (5.1) (34.2)
NATS (Services) Limited 18.2 (8.1)
Operational highlights:    
Flights handled (millions) 2.24 1.29
Safety: risk-bearing Airprox4 (attributable to NATS) 0 0
Delay seconds per flight (en route delay attributable to NATS for calendar years 2020 and 2019) 10.2 0.3


  1. Post-tax free cash flows after debt interest but excluding the proceeds of bonds issued, the cost of bonds redeemed and repayments or drawings of borrowing facilities. This alternative performance measure is explained in the annual report and accounts of NATS Holdings Limited.
  2. Excludes derivative financial instruments.
  3. Ratio of net debt (as defined by NERL’s Licence) to regulatory assets of the economically regulated business.
  4. An Airprox is a situation in which the safety of the aircraft was or may have been compromised in the opinion of a pilot or a controller.

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Ten years of reporting

Below are the last 10 years of our Annual Report & Accounts. More reports can be found in our full Documents library.

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