WEBJET THROTTLES UP TO $3B IN TRANSACTIONS

WEBJET THROTTLES UP TO $3B IN TRANSACTIONS

ONLINE TRAVEL booking business, Webjet (ASX: WEB), has reported it is on track to break the $3 billion mark in total transactional value in 2018, up from $1.97 billion.

At its annual general meeting, Webjet says it also expects its full-year earnings to rise around 14 per cent to $80 million.

The company, which reported earnings of $69.9 million in FY17, says it is exceeding its FY18 target growth rates in both consumer and business bookings.

Webjet had targeted annual consumer bookings growth of more than three times the underlying market rate, and business bookings growth of more than five times the underlying market rate.

Last year, the company more than doubled its full-year profit compared to FY16, which was buoyed by the integration of New Zealand travel booking site Online Republic.

Managing director John Guscic told shareholders that consolidation is the key for the remainder of FY18.

"Ongoing industry consolidation provides us with considerable growth opportunities and this structure will help ensure we are well positioned to identify and target those opportunities, while also being able to focus on delivering revenue and cost efficiencies across the regions," says Guscic.

Last year's results could have actually been even higher, had the company not been involved in a dispute with its auditor, BDO, over its accounting methods in its agreement with Thomas Cook Travel to supply it with hotel inventory.

That ruling by BDO, which was eventually accepted by Webjet, cut around $11.5 million from its full year earnings.

At around 11.30am (AEST), WEB shares were down more than 7 per cent to $10.98.

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