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Webjet hit hard by Thomas Cook’s demise, as Qantas called on for support

Huntley Mitchell

Huntley Mitchell

Webjet has revealed exactly what impact the collapse of Thomas Cook will have on the company, and it’s not pretty.

In a statement to shareholders yesterday, Webjet – of which Thomas Cook is a customer via its WebBeds B2B business – said it will lose between $150 million and $200 million in total transaction revenue that would have otherwise been realised.

Furthermore, Thomas Cook owed Webjet approximately €27 million ($43.9 million) in outstanding receivables, which the online travel giant said will be treated as a one-off expense.

In announcing its FY19 results last month, Webjet indicated that the earnings of its WebBeds business would grow by $27 million to $33 million in FY20 from a range of drivers, including Thomas Cook.

“The impact of Thomas Cook’s collapse is expected to reduce this expectation by up to $7 million in EBITDA,” the company said.

Meanwhile, Qantas has been called upon to provide support for customers affected by Thomas Cook’s demise, which is estimated to be 600,000. Some have been reportedly locked out of hotel rooms and held hostage by resorts seeking compensation.

“We have been approached for support and we’re assessing what help we may be able to provide,” a Qantas spokesperson told Travel Weekly.

The multimillion-dollar bonuses that were paid to Thomas Cook executives are also in the limelight, with The Telegraph reporting that they raked in more than £20 million ($36 million) over the past five years despite long-held fears about the company’s future.

Peter Fankhauser has been payed £8.3 million ($15.3 million) since becoming CEO in 2014, including a £2.9 million ($5.3 million) bonus in 2015.

According to The Telegraph, chief financial officers Michael Healy and Bill Scott have together been paid around £7 million ($12.9 million) since 2014, while the company’s non-executive directors were payed more than £4 million ($7.4 million) during this time.

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