Travelsupermarket parent reports 14% rise in profits

Price comparison group reported a 9% rise in revenue to just over £122 million and 14% increase in “underlying profit” to £17.1 million for the six months to June.

The group’s contributed £12.4 million or 10% of turnover in the half year, up by 35% on the first half of 2013.

The travel price-comparison site recorded a 16% increase in visitors to almost 40 million and a 24% rise in ‘transactions’ to almost 17.5 million. described the results as “positive”, saying “revenues were ahead of last year in all the verticals of the site – money, insurance and home services”.

However, visitor numbers were down year on year on the money and insurance sections of the site.

The group spent £7.8 million on capital investment in the first six months and plans to spend £17 million over the full year.

It said the investment, part of a three-year programme, would go to upgrade the site and develop

The group described the work as “a major upgrade to the engine that lies behind the website” and said: “Customers will notice better connectivity across channels and be able to use different devices to conduct the same transaction.”

Moneysupermart reported a 15% rise to £16 million in spending on offline marketing over the six months and said it would spend 10% more than last year over 2014 as a whole.

It noted the Travelsupermarket business “was supported by television and radio advertising in the important January trading period”.

Travelsupermarket revenue was primarily click-based, accounting for £11.6 million of the total.

Paid search represented just 18% of revenues across the group, down from 22% a year earlier. chief executive Peter Plumb said: “It’s been a good first half of 2014, with good revenue growth in our brands.

“Helping customers with new ways to save money means we have to invest in our business and that is what we’re doing.”

The group also includes, acquired in 2012.

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