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Thomas Cook Q1 Underlying Loss Narrows; Sees FY Trading In Line With View

British tour operator Thomas Cook Group Plc. (TCKGY.PK,TCG.L) reported Thursday that its first-quarter seasonal underlying loss from operations was 42 million pounds, an improvement from last year's loss of 52 million pounds, reflecting a good performance by Group Airline, against a weak comparative period for Condor in particular.

Gross profit of 376 million pounds was than 360 million pounds last year, while gross margin of 21.5% dropped 50 basis points from 22 percent a year ago. It was due to higher Spanish hotel bed cost inflation , and a lower mix of long haul sales in the quarter.

Group revenue increased 7% to 1.75 billion pounds in the first quarter from 1.64 billion pounds a year ago, with more customers and higher pricing in both tour operating and airline businesses.

Further, the company said its winter trading is in line with expectations, with 80% of the programme sold, a similar level to last year.

The company has made an encouraging start to trading for Summer 2018, with holiday and flight programme now 34% sold, 3% higher than this time last year.

Looking ahead, Peter Fankhauser, Chief Executive, said, "While it remains early in our sales cycle, we've got the year off to a good start.... based on current trading and the continued progress we are making on implementing our customer-focused strategy for profitable growth, we expect to deliver a performance in line with current expectations for the full year."

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