24 Feb 2012

Tourism Holdings looks to US for expansion

7:01 am on 24 February 2012

Tourism Holdings has its eye on expanding its operations in the United States after its first foray into the market returned good results.

The caravan maker and rental operator's acquisition of the US-based Road Bear business in 2010, boosted the company's revenues by $11 million.

This, coupled with a $4.2 million injection from the Rugby World Cup and cost cutting at home helped to push the company back into the black.

THL made an after tax profit of $4.2 million for the six months ending December, a turnaround from the $1.3 million loss made last year.

Chief executive Grant Webster says the US offers growth opportunities.

He says Tourism Holdings is still focused on improving its profitability, but the Europe and UK markets are still in decline for tourists visiting New Zealand and Australia and the high exchange rate is contributing to that.

Mr Webster says the company needs to continue to focus on reducing costs as a business and on markets like the US which does have tourism growth.

He says Tourism Holdings expects a full year profit of between $5 - $6 million, compared to last year's loss of more than $27 million.

It also announced a dividend of 2 cents per share.