Mar 06, 2019 (China Knowledge) - Shares of Ctrip, China’s leading online travel agency surged by more than 20% yesterday on the back of the company’s strong Q4 and 2018 performance.
Revenue for the fourth quarter last year came in at USD 1.1 billion, slightly higher than the USD 1.07 billion expected by analysts, which resulted in a non-GAAP earnings per share (EPS) of USD 0.13, compared to expectations of an adjusted loss of USD 0.03 per share.
Overall for the year, the travel giant managed a 16% increase in net revenue for the year, hitting the USD 4.5 billion mark. The company also managed to increase its presence in lower-tier cities in the country, with Ctrip-branded low-star hotel room nights growing by 50% last year.
Moving forward, company executive Chairman James Liang sees increasing urbanization in the country as an important growth driver, with urbanization rates expected to rise from 50% now to hit 70% to 80% within the decade.
With urbanization, the Chinese economy will move towards consuming more experience goods compared to necessities which will benefit Ctrip and the industry in the future.
The company will continue to develop new innovative products, increase support to their suppliers and increase their customer focus.
For this year, Ctrip expects first-quarter net revenue to grow at 18% to 23%. This would translate into non-GAAP operating income between USD 149 million to USD 164 million.
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