(Yicai Global) May 23 -- China's major online travel platform Ctrip.Com International Ltd. released its first-quarter financial report today, registering substantial increase in income and net profits, which indicates strong growth in China's inbound and outbound tourism.
It posted a net income of CNY6.7 billion (USD1 billion), up 11 percent annually and net profit of CNY1.1 billion, increasing by more than 19 times.
The good performance in the quarter was mainly driven by the growth of high-end hotel bookings, which has been faster than the market average. In second- and third-tier cities and low-budget travel markets, its influence is also continuously expanding. At the same time, growth in bookings for international hotel room was three times that of the industry, the online travel platform said.
"Our goal is to increase from 10,000 hotels available for bookings now to 50,000 in the future, from nearly 400 cities available for our service now to 1,000 and continue to improve the service quality," said Jane Sun, chief executive officer of Ctrip.
Following last year's performance, the firm's international air ticketing business has again become a major growth highlight for Ctrip this quarter. The rapid development of China's outbound travel market has spurred the strong growth of its international flights ticketing business, industry observers believe.
Last year, the number of Chinese citizens traveling abroad exceeded 130 million, spending USD115 billion and remaining the world's largest outbound tourist source country, showed data jointly released by China Tourism Research Institute and Ctrip.
Outbound trips from China are expected to reach 700 million in the next five years. The rapid growth of the outbound tourism market will give Ctrip more opportunities, observers said.
With the implementation of 'go global' strategy, Ctrip has been actively making deployment in the market in recent years. It has not only established closer ties with overseas airlines such as Deutsche Lufthansa AG, and Korean Air, but has also comprehensively provided routes covering 5,000 airports in 200 countries and regions.
Ctrip will implement four principles in its products, services and business, namely transparency, selectivity, consistency and fairness, James Liang, Ctrip's co-founder and executive chairman, said in the first quarter earnings call. In terms of organizational management, it will increase the weight of customer satisfaction in the appraisal system, take service level as the most important assessment criteria for managers, and will continue to increase investment in research and development in services.
Editor: Mevlut Katik