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Vaccines could mean US, UK travel restarts ahead of Australia

Business

Corporate Travel Management has recorded a $36 million loss for the half-year and predicted travel restrictions in the UK and US could soon ease, well ahead of Australia, despite its better health record.

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The loss meant no dividend would be paid adding to the pain for founder and managing director Jamie Pherous who has said previously that he relies on dividends from the company for a major part of his income.

Pherous said the increase in vaccinations in the US and UK may allow for an easing in travel restrictions.

“Whilst Australia and New Zealand have not commenced their vaccination programs, USA and UK are well advanced,” Pherous said.

“The UK has surpassed 15 million vaccinations and USA has surpassed 50 million vaccinations.

“Both countries expect to have the high-risk segment of the population vaccinated in this quarter, potentially allowing a relaxation in travel restrictions, much earlier than Australia-New Zealand.”

Australia received its first batch of vaccines this week and the AstraZeneca vaccine was also approved for use. The Pfizer vaccine is expected to be rolled out next week.

Corporate Travel Management revenue for the half was $74.2 million but it was accelerating as the company picked up new clients and its Australian division reported an underlying profit for the half of $3 million.

CTM said it was positioned to be a significantly larger business with higher earnings per share after the COVID-19 pandemic.

The company did not provide any guidance but said its Australia-New Zealand and Europe divisions were expected to be profitable in the second half.

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