Packages next as Wotif looks to buy

Packages next as Wotif looks to buy
By admin


Wotif has revealed plans to expand the company through acquisition and to further diversify its product by selling holiday packages.

The online retailer outlined its intentions after posting a record after-tax profit of $58 million, a rise of almost 14% on the previous year.

Chief executive Robbie Cooke said it was a “return to form” for the company with its flight sales the "standout” performance.

Central to Wotif’s future developments will be the creation of a dynamic packaging engine that will combine its hotel content and flights.

“We are focused on finding channels to push our extensive and unique Australian and New Zealand accommodation supply base more aggressively,” Cooke said.

“Consistent with this is our move towards offering dynamic holiday packages for sale on Wotif.com. This product extension will provide an opportunity to link into our global hotel supply chain to obtain wholesale product to package up with our flight content so as to provide compelling offers to our customer base.”

But while organic growth will provide momentum, that alone will not propel Wotif “to where we need to be”, Cooke said.

“In light of this we are prepared to contemplate extensions to our travel business by acquisition,” he said.

Acquisitions to add brands, leverage systems and supplier reach, to expand its geographic footprint and to tap into “other parts of the distribution chain” will all be considered.

Total Transaction Value for the 12 months to June 30 climbed 5% to $1.16 billion while room nights sold increase from 6.97m to 7.04m

Flight transaction value soared 30% to $110m.

Cooke said the outlook for domestic leisure travel remained “unremarkable” given the strong dollar although business travel, less impacted by currency, will “remain robust”.

He predicted the propensity for overseas holidays will see further growth in its international flight business.

Mobile continues to grow, he added, with 14% of traffic and 9% of room nights sold now being generated through mobile sites.

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