Budget online accommodation booking firm Hostelworld saw a 1% drop in group-wide bookings last year.
The group returned to overall bookings growth of 2% across all brands during the second half of 2016.
This resulted in a 1% decline for the year as a whole, the company disclosed in a trading update this morning.
However, the group delivered 21% growth in bookings for its flagship Hostelworld brand in the six months to December 31, resulting in a 18% rise for the year as a whole.
Mobile, including tablet devices, represented more than 49% of Hostelworld brand bookings for the year, up from 41% in 2015.
“The group also saw further encouraging growth in penetration from its Elevate pricing product,” fac
“The group’s business model continued to generate excellent free cash flow, which contributed to a strong balance sheet at the period end.”
The company expects full year results for 2016 – to be announced on March 28 – to be in line with expectations.
Chief executive Feargal Mooney said: “Set in the context of challenging market conditions, particularly in Europe in the second quarter, I am pleased with our second half performance and our continued momentum in the execution of strategy across mobile, pricing, geographic diversification, focused brand marketing and a more efficient booking mix.
“This positions the group well to make further progress in 2017.”