By Martin Kelly, Editor, TRAVELtech Asia Pacific

Remember World.net – in its way one of the pioneers of the Australian internet travel industry through the Travel.World.Net destination management and distribution system?

World.net made a bit of noise for a while but the company’s profile has slowly slipped with the most recent news item on its corporate site dated 2003. Well a small item in the business section of The Daily Telegraph recently caught the eye.

It read: “World.net must have impressed shareholders by talking up its global growth plans at its AGM (as its) shares shot up”, increasing 2.7 cents to 6.8 cents. In percentage terms that’s almost a 50% share price increase.

Not bad by any standards, although it was trade of a few thousand shares that caused the blip. So what did they tell shareholders at the AGM, the seventh for this company?

Well, CEO Ernst van Oeveren said the company’s performance improved A$1.6 million over the year “before recapitalization of R&D”.

Which sounds great but the reality is that – after recapitalisation of R&D – World.net lost A$1.2 million in 2005/06 – about 60 grand less than the year before.

On a more positive note, it has it also reduced operating costs by more than 40%, bringing them to less than A$200,000 a month for the first time since listing on the Australian Stock Exchange.

Revenue was down 7% to A$3.4 million and World.net currently has around A$700,000 in cash. The bulk of its income is coming from the UK (54%) with Australia (38%) and Malaysia (8%)making up the balance.

Looking ahead van Oeveren said the Travel.World.Net system will remain the primary business focus, while there are other technology initiatives in store.

China is also on the radar, while clients include Territory Discovery, Tourism Ruapehu and Bradford City Council.

14 December 2006
Copyright TRAVELtech Asia Pacific

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