Advantage reduces annual losses to £327,000

Advantage Travel Centres posted a pre-tax loss of £327,000 for the 2020/21 financial year, contrasting with an equivalent loss of £1.6 million for the previous year.

The group’s net assets stand at just under £5.1 million.

In a statement, Advantage said a combination of “tough decisions, careful financial management and adapting quickly to the evolving environment” had allowed it to reduce its deficit and enter the current financial year in a “sound position with a strong balance sheet”.

The consortium welcomed 17 new members with a combined turnover of £55 million in the financial year.

Steven Esom, chairman of Advantage Travel Partnership, said: “When our last financial year concluded we were experiencing the first signs of the easing of Covid international travel restrictions. The outlook was far from certain, and we knew it would take time and a good degree of skill to navigate ourselves into calmer waters.

“We also knew that we had to make some very tough decisions to ensure that Advantage remained financially sound and was able to invest in the business as we came out of the pandemic.

“During the year the membership has shown remarkable resilience to stand up and face the challenges caused by the pandemic. Whilst we have sadly experienced some member failures, we have also been able to recruit new members into the organisation.”

Esom added: “The Covid pandemic has certainly challenged us all in so many ways. It has in some respects widened the lens in which we see the sector as well as keeping us laser-focused on how we manage the business, our member shareholders and all our stakeholders.

“The unerring support of our members has meant so much to the Advantage team and to the board and we are enormously grateful for their continued support and confidence.”

Chief executive Julia Lo Bue-Said added: “Our profile across business, government and the media has increased exponentially, and it has given us a seat at the table and a voice to help drive change for the future of our industry and our members.

“As we move forward through 2022, we have reflected the post pandemic business environment in our refreshed strategy which will continue to build a stronger and united Advantage group, focused on the key interests and concerns of our members.”

She added: “We have adopted new ways of working which will bring greater flexibility and ensure that we can recruit and retain the best skills and talent.

“We will continue to speak out for our members as well look to further strengthen our collective voice and stature as one of the leading groups of independent travel businesses globally for both business and leisure.”

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