Tourism Holdings has significantly reduced debt after a disastrous year for tourism-related companies but will likely seek further funding as it re-invests in a new vehicle fleet.
The company posted a net loss after tax of $1.77 million for the six months ending December 31 and an underlying net loss of $3m, down from a profit of $13.1m for the same period last year.
Total revenue fell 1 per cent to $205.8m, driven by growth in vehicle sales. But international rental revenue plunged 50 per cent to $64.8m.
Tourism Holdings said it reduced its net debt to $22m in the period, a reduction of approximately $106m across the first half of the 2021 financial year and $175m since March 24, 2020.
It said it delivered record vehicle sales in the period amid a challenging rentals environment.
As of December 31, it held net tangible assets worth about $266m and $312m including its intangible assets.
On the outlook for the business in the second-half of the financial year, the company said it remained difficult to provide guidance, however it did expect to post a loss for the full year.
Chairman Rob Campbell said the company's ability to reduce debt over the past six months meant it was positioned well to face continued uncertainty.
Grant Webster, chief executive of Tourism Holdings, warned that its net debt would increase in the remainder of the financial year as it moved to re-invest in a new fleet of vehicles following record sales of rentals.
Over the six-month period, the number of vehicle sales in its fleet increased by 89 per cent, and a 132 per cent increase in vehicle sales revenue, globally.
Webster said the company was confident it could sell more vehicles in the months ahead to generate a profit, based on its sales performance over the past year.
"We are proactively adapting our business and product mix to match the current domestic trading environment, whilst also undertaking several business improvement projects to see that we come out as the leader in the market as international tourism returns," Webster said in the market announcement this morning.
"We continue to retain our commitment to the Future-Fit Business Benchmark, and it continues to influence the way we operate our business on a daily basis. We see this as fundamental to see that we survive and contribute to society in the long-term."
Tourism Holdings considered the half-year result "positive in the circumstances, particularly within our USA business", but remained realistic about the losses it would incur in the remainder of 2021.
In its first half of the year, Tourism Holdings acquired the remaining 50 per cent stake in Action Manufacturing, Australasia's leading quality vehicle specialiser, which employs a team of 150 spread across three factories in New Zealand.
The acquisition is expected to be complete by the end of March and is worth $9m, which will be funded by THL issuing 3.2 million ordinary shares at a price per share of $2.30 to the value of $7.5m to Alpine Bird Manufacturing, the remaining $1.5m will be paid in cash.
Grant Brady, who has been managing director of Action since its inception, will remain involved in the business as an executive director and provide transitional support to current chief operating officer, Chris Devoy, who will move into the role of chief executive.
Webster said Action had remained profitable throughout the Covid-19 pandemic and had generated an "exciting pipeline of new business".
"The Action business has a significant amount of potential to support and grow high-value New Zealand manufacturing exports, and is a fundamental part of THL's 'Build – Rent – Sell' model. We are excited to be able to support the business through its next stage of growth, with the backing of thl's balance sheet strength," chair Rob Campbell said.
Tourism Holdings shares recently traded at $2.19, down about 14 per cent on this time last year.