Corporate Travel soars ahead defying short sellers and critics

Corporate Travel soars ahead defying short sellers and critics

In spite of a late 2018 short selling attack and harsh criticism from the Australian Financial Review, Corporate Travel Management (ASX: CTM) has reported a strong start to the 2019 financial year.

Key figures were all up during the half, with revenue up 23 per cent to $212.2 million, underling NPAT up 20 per cent to $42.6 million, and total transaction value up 31 per cent to $2,951.5 million.

Managing director and founder Jamie Pherous says the company is clearly in good shape.

"We have delivered another great set of results across all of our operating regions," says Pherous.

"This strong performance reaffirms our clear strategy to build a global network by applying a high-quality growth business model."

"Our diverse business model and global footprint gives us a competitive advantage, while our proven M&A strategy is also providing strong returns."

"Our win and retention rates are at historically high levels, and this includes several multinational clients that recognise our international capabilities."

CTM's strongest performing region was Asia where underlying EBITDA was $12.5 million, up 34 per cent on 1H18.

The integration of Lotus Travel is reportedly on track to achieve early revenue for CTM.

Earnings from the ANZ sector were up 18 per cent in 1H19 with approximately 80 per cent of customers at home transacting online now.

The company's European business continues to outperform its market, with earnings up 30 per cent on the prior corresponding period despite Brexit impacting client activity at times.

CTM says it is tracking at the top end of FY19 guidance, with earnings expected in the range of $144-150 million.

Shares in CTM are up 8.16 per cent to $27.17 per share at 10.54am AEDT.

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