hotel.de announces figures for 2006 financial year
• Dynamic sales growth: + 55%
• Operating earnings: + 30%
• Booking volumes at record level
Nuremberg, 28.03.2007 - hotel.de AG today released its business results for the 2006 financial year. The company, whose operations are based in Nuremberg and Hamm, Germany, is a leading online reservation service, acting as a global intermediary for hotel accommodation. Its business activities focus in this respect on the high-growth market for online business customer bookings. The company has succeeded in generating significant operating earnings and sales growth in spite of the additional burden on its personnel in connection with the IPO.
Record level of sales growth
"We succeeded in the past financial year in breaking many of the company's records," commented Dr. Heinz Raufer, CEO of hotel.de AG, with regard to the extremely positive business results for 2006. As a result of its strong position in the market, hotel.de benefited significantly from the trend away from comparatively expensive booking channels, such as travel agents, towards online reservations. Sales grew by 55.3% to Euro 19.3 million, compared with Euro 12.5 million in 2005. Sales were also positively affected by the increased number of large-scale customers booking their accommodation via hotel.de.
The international business reported a particularly strong performance, with sales growth of 68.9% to Euro 7.1 million in this area. The company is thus already generating around one third of its sales in other countries. This substantial growth affirms the strategic decision by hotel.de to map its scalable business model onto foreign markets.
Net income exceeds analysts' forecasts
"Our earnings position in 2006 was characterised by extensive investments into our expansion and by the costs of the IPO", added Dr. Raufer. "Given these factors, we are therefore especially proud of our earnings performance." The company's operating earnings (excluding IPO expenses) amounted to Euro 4.8 million in 2006, equivalent to an increase of 30.4% on the previous year (Euro 3.7 million). Including IPO expenses, hotel.de's earnings before taxes of Euro 3.6 million were at almost the same level as in the previous year (Euro 3.7 million). At Euro 2.1 million (previous year: Euro 2.2 million), net income was markedly higher than the figure of Euro 1.7 million forecast by analysts.
Very good start to 2007
The company is maintaining its growth course in 2007. The number of overnight stays and booking volumes continue to rise compared with the previous year. Moreover, the management expects the outlet established in France in January and the development of the conference business to provide further growth momentum. The company had taken over the conference database, online reservation system and customer base of the conference organiser intergerma as of 1 January 2007. Dr. Raufer sees this step as also harbouring enormous margin potential. "The profit margin in our new business field is expected to amount to at least 20% in the current year already. The potential margin for the coming years is more than twice as high." In view of the further high level of investment in the company's international expansion, the Management Board expects the net income for the current financial year as a whole to be at around the same level as in the previous year. In terms of sales, the Management Board expects to see further growth in a medium double-digit range.