Travel TechnologyThe travel tech company turns in a rosier Q1 report card on the back of swift travel comeback.

Sabres sees sharp uptick in recovery

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Sabre has reported revenue gains across all business units for 1Q 2022.
Sabre has reported revenue gains across all business units for 1Q 2022. Photo Credit: Gettyimages/metamorworks

Sabre has reported revenue gains across its travel solutions, distribution, IT solutions and hospitality for the first quarter of 2022.

Total revenue for the company came in at US$585 million versus US$327 million year-on-year, with an operating loss of US$80 million versus the $203 million loss in Q1 2021.

Net income was reported as US$42 million, which was boosted by the sale of AirCentre as well as increased Travel Solutions incentive expenses and Hospitality Solutions transaction-related costs, compared to the net loss of US$266 million in Q1 2021.

Sean Menke, CEO and chair of the board at Sabre, says: "We are encouraged by the strengthening trends in our business and have seen consistent sequential volume improvements in key metrics week over week since mid-January 2022.

"After a slow start in January due to the Omicron variant, the travel recovery accelerated sharply and bookings in April ended at the highest level of recovery versus 2019 since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. The overall improvement in each global geographic region has been particularly positive, supported by a significant return of more profitable international and corporate travel.

"In addition, we continue to make progress toward our technology transformation goals, which we expect to deliver significant savings and expand revenue opportunities."

During an analyst call, Menke said that overall while domestic leisure bookings have recovered more significantly than business, the gap is closing.

"Travel trends are improving globally and our business mix is normalising towards pre-pandemic levels, resulting in higher unit profitability."

The recovery in business travel will be interesting to watch especially in light of Sabre's plan to invest US$80 million in American Express Global Business Travel in the second quarter.

The strategy is part of its multi-year tech partnership between the two companies to work on solutions that “will enable the future of corporate travel distribution.”

The company also provided an update on its technology transformation which is expected to result in a 30-35% return on investment.

After a slow start in January due to the Omicron variant, the travel recovery accelerated sharply and bookings in April ended at the highest level of recovery versus 2019 since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.– Sean Menke, CEO, Sabre

In 2022, the company says its two technology milestones are to "exit our Sabre-managed data centers and migrate to the Google Cloud" as well as to bring the customer reservations database to Google Cloud.

Revenue for the Travel Solutions business increased 85% to US$534 million, boosted by the increase in air and wider travel bookings as the industry recovers from the pandemic.

Distribution revenue was up 126% to US$343 million, helped by the industry's recovery and an increase in average booking fees.

Global net bookings, minus cancellations, were 65 million passengers, which represents 42% of 2019 levels. Revenue for the IT Solutions business increased 39% to US$191 million driven by the recovery in passengers boarded.

Hospitality Solutions revenue was up 33% to US$56 million boosted by the increase in central reservation system transactions.

The company says central reservation system transactions, which have hit 100% of 2019 levels, were up 31% to 23 million for Q1 2022.

Source: PhocusWire

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