Europe's biggest travel operator TUI forecast operating profit would jump 25% in 2024 after it more than doubled this year on strong demand for holidays, cruises and hotel stays, lifting its shares 8%.
TUI, like competitors easyJet and Jet2 has benefited from soaring demand this year as part of a pandemic bounceback in travel, but war in the Middle East and the threat of recession have prompted analyst warnings that profits may have peaked.
'Temporary Slight Slowing'
Reporting annual results on Wednesday, TUI said its current bookings were strong, although it noted that there had been a 'temporary slight slowing' in demand for trips to Egypt due to the conflict in the Middle East.
Overall, however, and against the background of the current macroeconomic situation and geopolitical uncertainties, it said bookings for this winter and next summer gave it confidence that operating profit would grow by at least 25% in this financial year on revenue at least 10% higher.
"Our strategic initiatives to increase value and the current booking trend lead us to expect a further improvement in 2024," TUI's chief executive Sebastian Ebel said on Wednesday.
The company's shares were up 8% at 552 pence by 0820 GMT, hitting four month highs.
TUI said bookings for next summer, the period when the group makes most of its profit, were currently up 13% on last summer with average prices up 4%.
For the year to Sept. 30, the first full year unaffected by pandemic travel restrictions since 2019, TUI posted underlying operating profit of €977 million up from €409 million in 2022, on revenue which came in at €20.7 billion, exceeding 2019 levels.
The Hanover-headquartered company also said it was considering delisting from the London Stock Exchange and opting for a prime standard listing in Frankfurt, given movements in liquidity and ownership over the last four years.
TUI Travel's dual London and Frankfurt listing resulted from the combination of Germany's TUI with Britain's First Choice Holidays in 2007. TUI said it could put a proposal to leave London to shareholders at its annual meeting in February.