Auckland International Airport lifted annual profit 27 per cent with growth from domestic and international passengers, and expects underlying earnings growth in 2018.

Net profit rose to $332.9 million in the year ended June 30, from $262.4m a year earlier, the company said in a statement. Underlying earnings advanced 17 per cent to $247.8m on a 9.7 per cent revenue lift to $629.3m, while expenses rose 8.8 per cent to $156.2m.

The company expects underlying profit for 2018 between $248m and $257m, which would deliver underlying earnings per share growth of up to 3.7 per cent compared with the 2017 financial year's underlying EPS of 20.8 cents, and would include the impact of its new aeronautical prices introduced in the financial year.

"The 2017 financial year was another strong year of growth right across our business with the company continuing to focus on upgrading its airport infrastructure, growing and supporting tourism and providing the best possible customer experience during a time of significant change," chair Henry van der Hayden said. "Together, our modest price changes for the 2018-2022 financial years and our $2 billion infrastructure investment plan will deliver significant benefits for passengers."


The airport is implementing a massive $1.9b infrastructure investment programme that includes a new runway by 2028. Earlier this month, it said it "will need to consider our capital funding options through the course of the next five years" to support the work.

The board declared a 10.5 cents per share final dividend, with an October 6 record date, payable on October 20. That takes the annual payout to 20.5 cents, a 17 per cent lift on 2016. Auckland Airport will continue its dividend reinvestment plan for the 2017 final dividend, meaning shareholders can buy shares at a 2.5 per cent discount to market price, instead of receiving the dividend as cash.

The shares last traded at $6.99 and have gained 11.8 per cent this year.