Road & Rail

Apollo Tourism & Leisure’s Aussie RV rentals burnt by bushfires

Huntley Mitchell

Huntley Mitchell

ASX-listed travel company Apollo Tourism & Leisure (ATL) has detailed the impact of Australia’s recent bushfire crisis on its half-yearly performance.

The RV specialist suffered increased cancellations and lower than expected last-minute bookings over the peak Christmas period as a result of the bushfires, with its rental income in Australia down 5.8 per cent to $29.5 million in the six months to 30 December 2019, compared to the prior corresponding period.

On a more positive note, new RV sales volumes in Australia were up 4.6 per cent, which ATL described as a “promising” result given industry production was down by around seven per cent during the period.

However, the company noted that tough retail conditions and ongoing weakened consumer confidence continue to contribute to margin pressure locally.

ATL’s Australian arm increased its half-yearly revenue by 6.3 per cent to $110.8 million, but underlying earnings fell by a whopping 72.3 per cent to $1.7 million.

Overall, ATL posted a statutory net profit after tax of $11.3 million for the first half of FY20 – down 23.5 per cent from its $14.7 million profit in the prior corresponding period. ATL’s underlying profit fell 20.5 per cent to $12 million.

Total revenue for the company rose 7.4 per cent to a record $197.2 million in the first half of FY20, while earnings before interest and taxes declined by 15.1 per cent to $24.9 million.

Commenting on the results, ATL chief executive and managing director Luke Trouchet said: “The first-half underlying result for FY20 of $12 million was a solid result in a soft market, which shows that Apollo is heading in the right direction after a transitional FY19.

“Record revenue was achieved despite global events impacting the RV industry. We have built on investments made in the prior year and will continue to develop our strategy to achieve our ambitions.

“Forward bookings for FY21 at this stage remain strong; however, the Australia bushfires and coronavirus (COVID-19) have impacted the H2 FY20 outlook.”

Feature image: Apollo Motorhome Holidays/Facebook

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