Travel Agents

Acquisitions help Helloworld to positive start in FY19

Huntley Mitchell

Huntley Mitchell

Helloworld Travel has enjoyed solid profit and revenue growth in the first half of the 2019 financial year, thanks in large part to recent acquisitions.

The travel agency posted a $21.9 million profit in the six months to 31 December 2018 – up 5.4 per cent on the prior corresponding period.

Total transaction value for Helloworld grew by 6.1 per cent to $3.153 billion, led by the business acquisitions undertaken in the second half of the prior year, including the Magellan Travel Group, Flight Systems Group and Asia Escape Holidays.

Revenue rose 7.7 per cent to $182.2 million, with the inclusion of revenue from the business acquisitions partially offset by reduced company owned stores. Excluding this, on a like for like basis, underlying revenue was in line with the prior corresponding period.

Helloworld’s Aussie revenue grew 11.4 per cent to $144.9 million, while its New Zealand revenue fell 2.3 per cent to $28.9 million, and Rest of the World revenue dropped 11.8 per cent to $8.5 million.

The agency’s half-yearly earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) increased 5.6 per cent to $42 million.

In a statement to shareholders, Helloworld said it was focused on driving the business forward in the second half of FY19 through profitable revenue growth, new revenue initiatives, maintaining cost control and extracting further efficiencies from its investment in technology developments, enhanced travel platforms, improved product offerings and increasing brand recognition.

“The group has positive momentum leading into the second half of FY19 and is well-positioned for sustainable long-term growth,” the company said.

“As a result, Helloworld Travel has re-confirmed its earning guidance for FY19 that its EBITDA will be in the range of $76.0 million to $80.0 million.

“This guidance is subject to no material and unexpected worsening in operating conditions or material unforeseen circumstances.”

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