Published: Fri, February 10, 2017
Economy | By Melissa Porter

Cautious outlook from Thomas Cook

Summer 2017 is so far 31% sold, which is 9% ahead of this time previous year, while the current winter season is only 82% sold, as expected.

Pay row More than a fifth of Thomas Cook's shareholders voted against the board's planned pay awards for directors at the firm's Annual General Meeting.

Fankhauser said an expanded holiday offering to Greece and a number of smaller destinations across Europe was paying off, with bookings to Greece now up by over 40%, while demand for destinations such as Cyprus, Bulgaria, Portugal and Croatia has been strong.

Amid news of the reporting, Thomas Cook plc shares plunged 7.12 percent as of 09.56AM (GMT).

Travel giant Thomas Cook is facing investor anger after a major shareholder voted against its plans for executive pay.

The firm said in its annual report that share bonuses under a long-term plan had been cut from 200 per cent of base salary to 165 per cent after discussions with shareholders.

Two years ago, Greece and the Greek Islands suffered a fall in sales at the height of the Syrian refugee crisis that saw thousands of desperate people landing on the country's beaches.

Chief executive Peter Fankhauser said it was a "solid performance" in light of the backdrop of continued uncertainty, with growth in holidays to Greece, Spain and long-haul destinations.

"Continued reductions in bookings to Turkey have been more than offset by strong demand for Greece".

"In addition, we opposed the introduction of new elements to the remuneration plan as we strongly believe these should be dealt with in the existing policy". "They are reasonable", he said in a press conference this morning.

Mr Fankhauser said there was no sign that Britons had been put off foreign holidays by the weak pound, but added that there has been a drop in demand for trips to the United States largely due to the strength of the dollar against the pound. It said that revenue was up 1 percent to 1.62 billion pounds.

Mr Fankhauser said the group remained cautious about the rest of the year "given the uncertain political and economic outlook".

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