Hostelworld data plan to lift revenue growth
Hostelworld CEO Gary Morrison said he is "confident" the group will return to revenue growth next year.
"We feel confident about a net revenue return to growth in 2020 and modest earnings growth in 2019," Mr Morrison said, after the group unveiled its results for 2018 yesterday.
It comes as the company continues to implement its strategic plan, which was launched last November.
In the short-term, the group's focus is on continuing to acquire more high-value customers, which Mr Morrison said were "very profitable" for both Hostelworld and its hostel partners.
In order to do this, the company has plans in place to utilise and leverage its "rich data sources" to target and grow its most profitable customer segments. Hostelworld's marketing activity and investment will now be focused on driving core customer acquisition, a move away from category advertising.
Earnings at Hostelworld fell 8pc year-on-year to €21.4m, in 2018. However, they came in 3pc ahead of analysts' expectations.
The group reported revenue of €82.1m in 2018 - not including deferred revenue.
Excluding the impact of deferred income, revenue grew by 1pc on a constant currency basis.
Deferred revenue comes from the rollout of Hostelworld's free cancellation booking option last year. It amounts to €2.9m, which will be recognised this year.
Shares in the group were up marginally yesterday.