YTB International has reported a sharp increase in losses for the last financial year, but the imminent danger of administration appears to have passed.
Following predictions from auditors over its ongoing viability at the end of 2008, YTB this year reported a net loss of $9.9 million for the year ending December 31st.
This compares to a figure of $4.5 million for the previous year.
Despite this, the company received positive news from auditors, confirming the group’s figures for fiscal 2009 will not include the “going concern” paragraph.
YTB chief executive, Robert Van Patten, said: “We are absolutely thrilled with the audit firm removing the going concern.
“It justifies the significant sacrifices the home office and our Independent Marketing Representatives have made this past year.
“Despite the challenges the economy faces, we remain focused on increasing our capital reserves, reducing corporate overhead and other administrative expenses in 2010.”
YTB is a provider of e-commerce business solutions for individual consumers and home-based independent representatives in the United States, Puerto Rico, Bermuda, the Bahamas, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Canada.
The company was recognised as the 25th largest seller of travel in the United States in Travel Weekly’s 2009 Power List, based on 2008 annual retail value of travel services booked.
However, despite the positive news, serious concerns continue over the future of the business.
Total revenue for the year ended December 31st 2009 decreased by some 58 per cent to $67.3 million, compared to $159.5 million for fiscal 2008.
However, general and administrative expenses decreased by $19.9 million, or 39 per cent, over the period when compared to 2008; this was primarily attributable to the decrease in expenses related to the Company’s National Convention, as well as additional reductions in staffing and fringe costs.
Chairman Mr J. Tomer added: “The Company is beginning to see signs of stabilisation related to new marketing efforts focused on retention and product improvement through our new ZamZuu initiatives.
“ZamZuu will strategically position us in the world of e-commerce to not only continue to capture online travel sales but to also take advantage of the growing trend of online retail sales.
“By continuing to further diversify our product line, ZamZuu has become extremely appealing to individuals seeking to improve their financial situation by participating in the dramatic growth of online retail,” he concluded.
YTB International – which operates under the brand Your Travel Biz – has faced questions over its legitimacy in recent years.
California attorney general Jerry Brown and former employees sued the company in early August, 2008, alleging it to be a pyramid scheme, among other claims.