Munich, Germany, 27 March 2019 – HolidayCheck Group AG can look back on an extremely successful financial year. Both revenue and operating EBITDA exceeded the company’s forecasts for the year.
In the view of the company, the Group’s positive results reflect the investments made over the course of 2018 in the further development of its booking platform and in measures to boost recognition of the HolidayCheck brand. Another factor was the buoyant state of the travel industry as a whole. According to an assessment by the Management Board, percentage growth in the Central European package holiday sector during the year under review was in the low- to mid-single digit percentage range – partly thanks to greater geopolitical stability at popular holiday destinations. In the view of the Management Board growth among online travel agencies is likely to have been above this figure.
Revenue of HolidayCheck Group AG improved by 14.2 percent year on year, from EUR 121.6 million to EUR 138.9 million.
As a result, the company was able to exceed not only its original forecast of between 8 and 13 percent revenue growth but also its upgraded July 2018 forecast of a 10 to 14 percent increase.
EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation) rose by EUR 9.8 million from EUR 0.2 million in 2017 to EUR 10.0 million in 2018.
Operating EBITDA (operating earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation) grew from EUR 1.6 million to EUR 10.7 million (up by EUR 9.1 million) year on year.
HolidayCheck Group AG managed to outperform its initial operating EBITDA forecast of between EUR 2.5 million and EUR 6.5 million and also its upgraded July 2018 forecast of operating EBITDA in a range of between EUR 7.0 million and EUR 10.0 million.
EBIT (earnings before interest and tax) went up by EUR 8.7 million from minus EUR 5.7 million to EUR 3.0 million year on year.
EBT (earnings before taxes) stood at EUR 2.8 million at the end of financial 2018, up by EUR 8.7 million from minus EUR 5.9 million in the previous year.
Consolidated net profit/(loss) for the year grew by EUR 7.8 million from EUR minus 5.9 million in 2017 to EUR 1.9 million in 2018.
Basic and diluted earnings per share increased by EUR 0.13 from minus EUR 0.10 at the end of the financial year 2017 to EUR 0.03 in the period under review.
As at 31 December 2018, the equity ratio stood at 82.8 percent compared with 86.1 percent at the end of 2017.
The free cash flow rose by EUR 21.2 million to EUR 7.6 million. The year-end figure for 2017 was minus EUR 13.6 million.
This led to an increase in cash and cash equivalents, which ended the year at EUR 33.8 million (31 December 2017: EUR 26.2 million).
In light of these positive earnings and cash flow figures, the Management Board and Supervisory Board have decided to propose a dividend of EUR 0.04 per qualifying no-par value share to the annual general meeting on 4 June 2019.
The HolidayCheck Group’s vision is to become the most holidaymaker-friendly company in the world. To this end, it plans to steadily expand its portfolio and invest in measures that will accelerate the development of existing products and services in its core package holiday, hotel only and cruise segments. There are also plans to invest in the development of new products and services in related areas, primarily with a view to establishing an in-house tour operator business.
Furthermore, our subsidiaries plan to make further investments in marketing that involve both direct sales promotions and other measures designed to give a sustained boost to the profile of our various brands.
The Management Board anticipates a further increase of between 7 and 12 percent in the HolidayCheck Group’s revenues in 2019, after adjusting for acquisitions or disposals of long-term equity investments and new business start-ups.
As a result of the personnel and marketing investments outlined above, the Management Board expects operating EBITDA in financial 2019 to lie between EUR 8.5 million and EUR 13.5 million. This includes positive effects of around EUR 2.5 million on operating EBITDA due to first-time adoption of International Financial Reporting Standard (IFRS) 16.
About HolidayCheck Group AG:
HolidayCheck Group AG (ISIN DE005495329), Munich, Germany, is one of Europe’s leading digital firms for holidaymakers. With a total workforce of around 450, HolidayCheck Group AG comprises HolidayCheck AG (which operates hotel review and travel booking portals by the same name); Driveboo AG (which operates the car rental portal MietwagenCheck); and WebAssets B.V. (which operates the Zoover hotel review portals and the MeteoVista/WeerOnline weather portals). HolidayCheck Group’s vision is to become the world’s most holidaymaker-friendly company in the world.