Corporate Travel Management has booked a 27 per cent rise in half-year net profit to $38.8 million during a period in which it snapped up two smaller companies in Australia and Asia.
Total revenue for the six months to December 31 increased by 23 per cent to $212.2 million and the Brisbane-based company said it was on track for the top end of its financial 2019 guidance.
Morgans analyst Belinda Moore said it was a very strong result that beat expectations, with shares in the travel group rising by more than 10 per cent by 1300 AEDT on Wednesday.
CTM acquired NSW-based SCT Travel Group in July and bought the Hong Kong-headquartered Lotus Travel Group in October.
Corporate Travel said SCT, also known as Platinum Travel Corporation, contributed a net profit after tax of $283,007 to the group up to December 31 while Lotus added $1.2 million to the company’s bottom line.
“We remain focused on executing our strategy to establish a global footprint and generate scale, creating opportunities for long-term, sustainable growth,” CTM managing director Jamie Pherous said.
The company, which provides travel advice, ticketing, booking, recommendations and travel management data to corporate clients, said revenue from Australia and New Zealand grew 15 per cent during the six months and it expected the region would be a significant contributor to the group’s full-year profit.
CTM’s shares have climbed higher since a 30 per cent drop in late October last year after hedge fund VGI Partners raised concerns about its accounting and disclosure.
CTM shares were trading 10.91 per cent higher at $27.86 at 1300 AEDT on Wednesday.
Corporate Travel declared a fully franked interim dividend of 18 cents a share, up three cents from the prior corresponding period.
CORPORATE TRAVEL H1 PROFIT LIFTS
* Half-year net profit up 27 pct to $38.8m
* Revenue up 23 pct to $212.2m
* Interim dividend up 3 cents to 18 cents per share, fully franked, from a year earlier