TUI Group (LON:TUI) has updated investors on its half-year performance.
Highlights from the company statement:
- Good overall performance in the first half driven by growth in
Hotels & Resorts and Cruises, as well as delivery of merger synergies.
- Current trading for Summer 2017 remains in line with our expectations.
- Strength of the integrated model and balanced portfolio of markets and destinations enable us to continue to deliver sustainable growth.
- Travelopia disposal on track to complete during H2 2016 / 17; German airline JV negotiations ongoing.
- Reiterate our guidance of at least 10 % growth in underlying EBITA in 2016 / 17.
Current trading for Winter has closed out in line with our expectations. We have delivered further expansion in our hotel and cruise brands, with openings for Riu, TUI Blue, Blue Diamond, as well as the first Winter of operations for Mein Schiff 5 (TUI Cruises) and TUI Discovery (Thomson Cruises). In Source Markets, customer growth has been driven by long haul, Canaries, Cape Verde and Cyprus, with a continued increase in customers staying in our own hotels.
Summer 2017 remains in line with our expectations, with good overall demand for our hotel and cruise brands, and from our Source Markets. In our hotel brands, we recently opened a TUI Blue property in Tuscany, and will open another in Croatia this July. Subdued demand for Turkey and North Africa continue to be offset by the popularity of other destinations including Spain and Canaries, Greece, Cyprus, Cape Verde and Caribbean.
In Cruises, TUI Cruises will launch the newly built Mein Schiff 6 in June. The 2,500 berth ship will be based initially in Kiel (Germany) before moving to New Jersey for itineraries in the USA and Caribbean. Demand for cruises remains buoyant in Germany, and we remain pleased with the performance of the TUI Cruises fleet. Thomson Cruises continues its programme of modernisation with the launch of TUI Discovery 2. The 1,800 berth ship, recently acquired from Royal Caribbean, will be based in the Mediterranean this Summer before moving to the Caribbean for Winter 2017 / 18. We are pleased with sales for the new ship, as well as the performance of the rest of the Thomson Cruises fleet.
The Source Markets' programme, which includes sales of holidays to our own and third party hotels, is 62 % sold, in line with prior year. Bookings are 4 % ahead of prior year, with growth in demand for Greece, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Cape Verde and long haul. We are also continuing to drive direct and online distribution, with bookings made via these channels up 4 % and 6 % respectively.
In the UK, despite the backdrop of Brexit, demand for our holidays remains resilient with the percentage of the programme sold in line with prior year. As previously outlined, revenue and selling price reflects to an extent the impact of currency cost inflation for Euro based destinations this Summer.