Hostelworld ‘on track’ to meet growth targets

Irish hospitality company reached record revenue of €51.5m in first half of year

Dublin-based hospitality group Hostelworld said it was on track to meet growth targets after it confirmed record revenue in the first half of the year.

The company, which saw revenue increase 57 per cent year on year to €51.5 million in the first half of 2023, said there was robust booking growth across all its regions. Net revenue was almost €46 million for the six-month period, an increase of almost two-thirds year on year, while net bookings were 2.4 million, up from 2.07 million a year earlier.

The group reported the figures in July in a trading update.

Operating loss for the six months was €1.7 million, narrowing from the €12.6 million loss in 2022. The company recorded a total loss of €7.5 million for the period.


Total cash and cash equivalents were €10.7 million at the end of June, down from €19 million at the end of December, while net debt was €16.2 million, down from the €21.6 million on December 31st.

Hostelworld also completed the refinancing of €30 million in legacy debt, with a new €20 million facility from AIB that includes a €10.0 million term loan and a €2.5 million undrawn overdraft.

Hostelworld also reiterated its earnings guidance for the full year, expecting earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (ebitda) in the region of €16.5 million to €17 million.

Its share price has risen almost 20 per cent in the year to date, with the company benefiting from the post-Covid rebound in trade.

Chief executive Gary Morrison said the record revenue and improving adjusted ebitda margins were being driven by its social strategy and operational cost discipline.

“This performance also translated directly into strong growth in operating cash flow year on year, which in turn enabled us to strengthen our balance sheet by refinancing our legacy Covid-19 era debt facility at significantly lower interest rates,” he said.

The global hostel category has also shown double-digit bednight growth year on year in the first six months of 2023, which Hostelworld has benefited from with the resumption of cross-border travel following the spread of Omicron.

“During the first half we also made progress on modernising our platform to enable us to support faster execution of our growth strategy. In particular, we made significant progress refactoring key parts of our core platform into a series of microservices, which enable us to access more of the native capabilities of our cloud provider and pay for the computing resources we use ‘on-demand’,” Mr Morrison said.

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien is an Irish Times business and technology journalist