Summer loving for buoyant TUI Travel

​​Thomson and First Choice owner T​UI Travel reported a 21​ per cent​ jump in third-quarter operating profits to £92​m on the back of selling higher-margin holidays to destinations such as Jamaica, Mexico and Ibiza.

TUI Travel reported a 21 per cent jump in third-quarter profits
T UI Travel reported a 21 per cent jump in third-quarter profits

T​UI Travel is in £4.4​bn merger talks with its majority owner Germany’s T​UI, and under Takeover Panel rules has until September 19 to announce a deal.

​​TUI said it ​​​was “delighted” with the performance of its online operations, with bookings over the internet accounting for more than half of summer holidays sold so far.​

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Chief executive Peter Long said: “We remain pleased with progress in summer trading, despite strong comparatives, and are achieving higher average selling prices across mainstream overall.”​

T​UI​ is targeting ​seven​ to 10 per​ ​cent growth in underlying operating profit on a constant currency basis for the 12 months to the end of September, but takeover rules prevented it from re-affirming guidance yesterday.

The two companies held merger talks in 2013, ​but a deal collapsed after TUI AG said an offer would not make sense given their share prices at the time.