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Bullish Start to Summer Carries to 2Q Beat

priceline ceo jeff boyd

Priceline Chairman Jeff Boyd (REUTERS) (PCLN) weighed in with a stronger-than-anticipated 24% leap in second-quarter profits on Thursday as the online travel service enjoyed a 38% surge in gross travel bookings.

Shares of rallied 3% on the earnings beat and projections for bookings to soar as much as 34% in the third quarter amid a bullish start to the summer travel season.

The company said it earned $437 million, or $8.93 a share, last quarter, compared with a profit of $352 million, or $6.88 a share, a year earlier.

Excluding one-time items, it earned $9.70 a share, well ahead of consensus calls from analysts for $9.36.

Revenue jumped 27% to $1.68 billion revenue, compared with the Street’s view of $1.66 billion. CEO Jeffery Boyd said the “summer travel season got off to a strong start for our brands,” highlighting “steady hotel room night growth and improving car unit growth” as well as “growing momentum” in the company’s U.S. business.

Looking ahead, forecasted non-GAAP EPS of $15.30 to $16.30, compared with estimates for $15.86.

Sales growth is seen ranging between 23% and 30% on total gross travel bookings growth of 27% to 34%. International gross travel bookings are seen soaring 32% to 39%.

Norwalk, Conn.-based saw its shares jump 2.93% to $963.00 in extended trading on Thursday, positioning them to extend their 50% surge so far this year.

Follow Matt Egan on Twitter @MattMEgan5