Thomas Cook says turnaround on track

Friday, 5 October 2012 00:01 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

LONDON (Reuters): Thomas Cook, the world’s oldest travel group, said last week its turnaround plan was working, giving it confidence that it will meet market expectations for the year ending this month as it seeks to draw a line under a difficult 18 months.

The company, which was thrown a lifeline by lenders in May, said it was seeing an improvement in its finances and added that demand for last-minute summer holidays had been strong.

Analysts expect the 171-year-old company to post pre-tax profits of 35 million pounds ($56.7 million) for the year ending 30 September, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S Estimates.

Thomas Cook will report full-year results on 28 November. It said it was on track to meet expectations for the period, after posting a first-half loss in May of 328.3 million pounds.

“My priority has been to ensure a renewed focus on delivering to our plans for the current financial year,” said Chief Executive Harriet Green in a statement. Formerly the head of electronic parts distributor Premier Farnell, Green took over at Thomas Cook in July as part of a shake-up at the top of the company which also involved the appointment of a new chief financial officer earlier this year.

Rival operator TUI Travel said that it was encouraged by the number of winter getaways being snapped up and that it had sold more summer holidays this year than a year ago.