Saga reports strong performance for its cruise and travel divisions

By Lisa James
17/04/2024
Home » Saga reports strong performance for its cruise and travel divisions

Saga plc has reported a strong financial performance, more than doubling its underlying profit year-on-year, in its latest preliminary results.

The Group’s preliminary results for the year ended 31 January 2024 reveal underlying revenue growth of 13% and an underlying profit before tax of £38.2 million, compared to £15.5m last year.  

Debts have been significantly reduced, from £711.7m last year to £637m.

Saga’s Ocean Cruise division exceeded initial targets, supported by strong customer demand, reporting underlying profit before tax of £35.5m, compared to £0.7m the previous year.

River Cruise and Travel both returned to profit, with River Cruise reporting an underlying profit before tax of £3m, compared to a loss of £5m. Passenger numbers increased to 16,600.

Travel returned to profit for the first time since the pandemic, reporting an underlying profit before tax of £1.5m, an improvement of £5.6m when compared with the £4.1m pre-tax loss last year.

Revenue was 44% ahead of the prior year at £156.3m, supported by a 22% increase in passengers to 57,800.

Saga’s Insurance Broking division made a pre-tax profit of £39.8m, down from £71.5m in the previous year, driven by a ‘challenging insurance environment and, in particular, the impact of net rate inflation’.

The number of total policies in force at 31 January 2024 was 1.5m, 9% behind the prior year. Policy sales across the 12-month period were also 9% behind, reflecting a 9% fall in motor and home policies, alongside 8% and 3% fewer sales of travel and private medical insurance policies respectively.

Group CEO Mike Hazell said: “Saga has delivered a strong financial performance with underlying revenue growth of 13% and an underlying profit that was more than double that of the prior year.

“We have also continued to generate significant positive cash flows and reduced our net debt by £74.5m over the past 12 months.

“Off the back of this strong performance, we are now also taking action to position the business for long-term success. I am excited about the potential that partnerships present for Saga and, as a result, we are accelerating the work we are doing to explore such opportunities across both our Ocean Cruise and Insurance businesses.

“Ocean Cruise had an outstanding year and, as a result, we far exceeded our initial earnings targets, while River Cruise and Travel both returned to profit for the first time since the pandemic. Looking ahead, forward bookings are strong, with all three of these businesses significantly ahead of the same point in the prior year.

“While our Insurance business continued to be hindered by challenging conditions, with inflationary headwinds impacting policy volumes and margins, particularly for our three-year fixed-price policies, we are taking the necessary actions to reposition the business. We are investing in price to improve our competitive position and stabilise our policy volumes and early signs indicate that this is delivering the expected benefits.”

Share this article

Latest News

Loading