On the Beach experiences 'subdued' trading in second half

Wed, 27th Oct 2021

Travel agency On the Beach said it experienced suppressed trading in the second half of its financial year through September and refrained from providing any earnings guidance for the current year. The company said it had decided to extend its off-sale period for holidays from 30 June to 31 August, in light of UK government policies on leisure travel. It said the decision also was based on consumer feedback showing a market-wide lack of appetite for booking certain destinations, as well as a likely loss of customer goodwill for holidays that might be cancelled. 'As a result of the above, the group along with the whole travel industry experienced suppressed trading in the second half,' On The Beach said. 'The group has maintained investment in all strategic areas over this period, including technology, brand and supply, to ensure it remains well-placed to take advantage of the market share opportunity when demand for booking holidays returns.' The company restarted selling holidays to travel from early September, when it became clearer that overall confidence to book a holiday had increased. It said that while demand remained below pre-pandemic levels, initiatives, including a free Covid-19 tests promotion, combined with a further softening of government restrictions, had stimulated bookings in the final weeks of the financial year. The company had cash in excess of £55 million at 30 September, excluding customer prepayments of around £40 million, held in a ring-fenced trust account. 'Given the continued level of short term uncertainty, it would not be appropriate to provide any financial guidance for the 2022 financial year,' On The Beach said. 'The board remains committed to investing for long term market share gains in the 2022 financial year, ahead of full market recovery.' Story provided by StockMarketWire.com

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