Online travel agent Webjet today announced that its profit has increased by AUD3.4 million to AUD9.1 million for the six months to Dec 31, 2014. Revenue rose 64% to AUD52 million, driven by the acquisition of Zuji, which contributed AUD18 million to revenue growth. It’s the strongest result Webjet has delivered for the last couple of years and surprised analysts.
The company has been under pressure following a recent history of over promising and under delivering, especially with regard to Zuji, which has been a disappointment to date.
On this occasion, Webjet issued a brief release in which MD John Guscic said: “We have delivered exceptional results following the transformation and integration of Zuji and major margin improvement in the core business.”
His analyst’s presentation was much more colourful and included the following quote from Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar:
“Cowards die many times before their deaths. The valiant never taste of death but once”.
Webjet would be the valiant one. Or maybe John Guscic is Julius Caesar.
In any case, For all the noble talk though there wasn’t much mention of Zuji in the presentation other than noting Webjet was able use its accrued losses to bring down the tax paid to 20%.
For further details, see presentation.