Terror attacks hit revenues at Thomas Cook

Terror attacks hit revenues at Thomas Cook

Travel agent Thomas Cook has reported third quarter revenue fell eight per cent, to £1.8 billion, as terror attacks across Europe hit sales.

At the same time, underlying profit shrank from £30 million last year to £2 million.

Pre-tax losses grew from £44 million in the third quarter of last year to £64 million.

Peter Fankhauser, chief executive of Thomas Cook, commented: “Our financial result in the third quarter was in line with our expectations when we last reported in May, following the impact of the attack on Brussels airport in March and continued weak customer demand for Turkey, which has affected Airlines Germany in particular.

“Since the half year, we’ve taken action to further reduce our capacity to Turkey and increased sales of holidays to other areas, including the Western Mediterranean and long-haul destinations such as the USA.

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“Growth to smaller destinations such as Bulgaria and Cuba is also strong.

“We are operating in a challenging geopolitical environment, with repeated disruption in some of our key source and destination markets.

“In addition, while Brexit has had no noticeable impact on our bookings so far, it has added to a general sense of uncertainty – for our business and our customers alike.”

Thomas Cook said it will likely miss full-year profit targets, with the travel agent now expecting to make £300 million compared with between £310-335 million earlier in the year.

Fankhauser added: “Against this backdrop, our focus is to give customers great quality holidays as part of a package that provides the reassurance that they will be cared for at all points, from booking their holiday through to their return home.

“Our all-inclusive holidays in particular enable customers to enjoy their holidays without worrying about unexpected costs.

“Meanwhile, we continue to make good progress with our underlying strategy, with sales to our own-brand hotels up by seven per cent so far this year.

“Overall, our improving operations and significantly stronger balance sheet give us the flexibility to navigate through the current market conditions.

“I am confident that our focus on strengthening our holiday offering, transforming our customer service, and bringing our businesses closer together, is laying strong foundations for future growth.”