Top public companies 2010: Wotif.com Holdings

Written on the 3 December 2010

WOTIF Holdings Limited (WOTIF) has launched a new flight booking service wotflight, after announcing record results for the December half with a 34 per cent rise in profit.

Managing director Robbie Cooke is ‘quietly confident’ that with new products and strong demand for existing services the second half will likely be a positive one as well.

“We’re pretty excited about Wotflight – it’s been the glimmer in our eyes for the last 18 months and we started working on it in August last year,” says Cooke.

“It’s a great opportunity in many respects, as with the wotif.com brand we get 3.8 million eyeballs on the site a month and 30 per cent of those looking on wotif.com are actually flying to their destinations,” he says.

“The wotflight.com offering makes a compelling case, as anyone who books on the site will get a $10 voucher for accommodation on wotif.com, so they can either use that straight away or accumulate vouchers to use on one big trip.”

He says the sister brand will go international very soon.

“At the moment it’s just domestic only, but in the next six months we plan to make trans-Tasman flights available and in this calendar year we’re looking to have a full range of international flights available, with all the major carriers.”

Perhaps dwarfed by the opportunities presented by Wotflight is Go Do Pty Ltd, an acquisition WTF made in December.

“Go Do is a business that we understand well because we’ve worked with them before as a partner – it’s an online booking site for things to do, so if someone goes somewhere they can book spas, get tickets to Dreamworld or Movie World, or go to the V8s,” he says.

“What we’ll probably do is once a customer has booked accommodation, let’s say on the Gold Coast, on their booking confirmation we give them a list of the top five things to do on the Gold Coast.”

Cooke highlights that in the December half more than half a billion dollars in accommodation sales were booked on wotif.com, with significant improvements in operating margins as well.

“Our performance over the six months is clear evidence that the wotif.com business continues to gain momentum,” he says.

“More and more consumers are deserting the old world ‘bricks and mortar’ travel store and discovering the value, convenience and ease of booking online with wotif.com.

“With the travel.com.au Limited and Asia Web Direct acquisitions undertaken in 2008 now fully integrated, we are seeing considerable efficiencies from our increased scale.”

Managing director: Robbie Cooke
Market capitalisation: $1.5 billion
Revenue ’09: $121.3 million
Profit ’09: $43.5 million
Staff: 400
Established: 2000


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