Scottish travel group Minoan trimmed seasonal winter losses as it revealed plans to make further acquisitions.
The parent company of Stewart Travel, John Semple Travel and King World Travel reported a 1.7% reduction in operating losses to £584,000 in the six months to April 30 over the same period a year earlier.
Group total transaction value rose by 18.6% to £28.7 million.
Minoan’s travel and leisure division saw a small decline in pre-tax profits and the divisions full year results will be affected by a number of previously reported one off impacts due to a dispute with a provider of back office services which has now been resolved.
The division’s specialist sector, including golf and Canada, saw gross sales rise by more than 35% and commission by 27%.
July was described as the best trading month of the year.
“In addition, we are examining a number of significant transactions to expand this division, not least through acquisitions which will be earnings enhancing,” chairman Christopher Egleton said.
Minoan’s plans for a resort in Crete still remains subject to formal final approval following the financial turmoil in Greece.
“Although the worst of the crisis seems to have passed, and the recent parliamentary votes have been in favour of the new agreement with creditors, it is possible that there may be further hitches before final agreement on the detail is forthcoming,” Egleton said.
He added: “As the political picture in Greece becomes more stable and government procedures are less impacted by the macro economic problems I expect to be able to update shareholders with positive news.
“In the travel division, underlying performance continues to improve and, in due course, I hope to be able to announce significant progress.”
Reviewing the half year, Egleton said: “The group has seen improved growth in the first half, with the travel division benefitting from the strength of the pound and the UK’s continuing economic recovery.
“Trading remains strong with the business in robust shape to move forward over the rest of this year and management continue to examine earnings enhancing strategic acquisitions to further improve the travel and leisure division’s performance.”
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