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2023 08 29

Novaturas Group's H1 EBITDA hits EUR 5.8M, exceeding the result for 2019

Novaturas Group has recorded a solid growth in the second quarter and after the first half-year its EBITDA has now exceeded the result for the full year 2019. The prompt response to changes in travel demand, the diversification of destinations, the improved quality of service and the management of fuel price risk allow to increase full-year financial forecast again.

“A well thought-out and proven programme of destinations, a focus on aviation quality and punctuality, and strategically planned sales for next summer and winter have all contributed to the financial sustainability of the Group. This has allowed us to revise our 2023 forecast to the positive result, as we have already done after the first quarter. We are adjusting the EBITDA forecast of EUR 3–5 million at the beginning of the year to EUR 6–8 million, and the net profit forecast to EUR 4–6 million instead of EUR 1–3 million,” says Vitalij Rakovski, CEO of Novaturas Group.

Commenting on the actual results for the first half-year, Mr Rakovski adds that EBITDA was positive at EUR 5.8 million, compared to a negative EBITDA of -EUR 750 000 in the first half of last year. This significant change is again due to the gradual diversification of the programme, the early market launch of future season travel and the prudent management of travel yield risk.

In the first half-year, the company generated revenues of EUR 102.5 million, which is an increase of 12 per cent compared to the same period last year. A total of 124 000 travellers were served, which is a decrease of 3 per cent compared to 2022.

Group-wide, around 80 per cent of the full year programme was sold between January and mid-August.

Competitive advantage through diversification of destinations

Even as the competitive environment intensifies, the company succeeds in maintaining its leadership and a strong position across the Baltic countries.

“In summer, we focused not only on Turkey, where supply has been growing in recent years and the competition is the fiercest, but also on other destinations. We have reacted and deliberately changed our volumes in Turkey, as the profitability in this destination is lower this season, so we compensated for this through the prompt offering of other destinations that are attractive to travellers. In this way, we are also shaping new habits and encouraging the discovery of more diverse holiday destinations,” comments Mr Rakovski.

The sales of all destinations, except Turkey, have grown by more than 10 per cent by July compared to last year, with some destinations standing out in particular. Sales to Montenegro have increased by a half and sales to Tunisia have almost doubled.

Flexibility, punctuality of flights and focus on sustainability

The updated quality criteria for air carriers have led to improved punctuality of flights in the first half-year. Last year, almost 3 per cent of flights were delayed by more than 3 hours on a group-wide basis, while this year the figure has dropped to 1 per cent.

When choosing air carriers, the company takes into account their impact on climate change. In Latvia, partnership with airBaltic has been strengthened this summer and the airline company has reduced its CO2 emissions by 20 per cent in 2021–2022. Last year, this air carrier received the award for Europe’s youngest fleet, with an average aircraft age of 2.87 years. airBaltic is also reducing its fuel consumption, with 29 per cent less fuel used per flight in 2022 compared to 2021.

Considering better travel times, comfort and customer experience, the company has added FreeBird Airlines and Turkish Airlines to its flights from Riga to Turkey this season.

A new website for customer convenience

In August, Novaturas launched a renewed website, which is currently undergoing further development. Some of the most notable changes include faster functioning and a more user-friendly travel planning and purchasing feature.

Some of the goals defined by the company in its new strategy are to achieve technological progress and improve customer experience; therefore, more modern solutions have been required as regards the website. It is seen as a potentially growing sales channel.

According to the company’s data tracking tool, in the first half-year, around 50 per cent of customers who opened the websites of major tour operators in Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia visited the website of Novaturas.

First on the market to announce the travel programme for the next summer season

The company was the first on the Baltic tourism market to announce the start of the 2024 summer season and to open bookings for travel to Turkey at the beginning of August. Novaturas offers an attractive package of extra services that provides travellers with flexibility, security guarantees and additional options. The full summer 2024 programme and new destinations will be announced in September.

Team changes – new board, focus on sustainability

The newly elected Board of Directors began its work this summer. Tomas Korganas and Gediminas Almantas joined the Board (G. Almantas as Chairman), while Ugnius Radvila continues his work as the Board member.

The team also welcomed Audronė Alijošiutė-Paulauskienė, Head of Sustainability. The company will focus even more on hotels, air carriers and other partners which adhere to sustainability principles, as well as on education for the team and travellers.

In spring, Novaturas Group presented its 2023–2025 strategy and is focusing on the following key areas: technological advancement, better traveller experience, sustainable travel and employee engagement.  

Effective risk management

Novaturas Group has now hedged more than 80 per cent of its total sales volumes with derivative financial instruments against aviation fuel price and currency fluctuations.

Performance of Novaturas Group for the 1st half-year of 2023 (EUR 000's):  

Financial indicators 1st half-year of 2023 1st half-year of 2022 1st half-year of 2021
Revenue 102 536 91 647 29 114
Gross profit 15 663 7 854 5 164
EBITDA 5 829 (750) 1 790
Net profit (loss) 4 744 (1 660) 1 120

About the company 
Novaturas Group is the largest and the only charter flights‘ local tour operator in the Baltic States, offering summer and winter trips to more than 30 destinations worldwide and more than 100 tours. In 2022, Novaturas Group recorded revenues of EUR 197 million and served 267 000 passengers in Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia.