September 28, 2012 / 7:18 AM / 6 years ago

Thomas Cook says turnaround on track

A worker changes the window display of Thomas Cook in Loughborough, central England December 14, 2011. REUTERS/Darren Staples

LONDON (Reuters) - Thomas Cook (TCG.L), the world’s oldest travel group, said on Friday its turnaround plan was working, giving it confidence that it will meet market expectations for the year ending this month as it seeks to draw a line under a difficult 18 months.

The company, which was thrown a lifeline by lenders in May, said it was seeing an improvement in its finances and added that demand for last-minute summer holidays had been strong.

Analysts expect the 171-year-old company to post pretax profits of 35 million pounds ($56.7 million) for the year ending September 30, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S Estimates.

Thomas Cook will report full-year results on November 28. It said it was on track to meet expectations for the period, after posting a first-half loss in May of 328.3 million pounds.

“My priority has been to ensure a renewed focus on delivering to our plans for the current financial year,” said Chief Executive Harriet Green in a statement.

Formerly the head of electronic parts distributor Premier Farnell PFL.L, Green took over at Thomas Cook in July as part of a shake-up at the top of the company which also involved the appointment of a new chief financial officer earlier this year.

Rival operator TUI Travel TT.L said on Thursday that it was encouraged by the number of winter getaways being snapped up and that it had sold more summer holidays this year than a year ago.

Shares in Thomas Cook, which have risen 3 percent in the last three months, were down 1.6 percent at 15.75 pence in opening trade on Friday, valuing the firm at 151 million pounds. ($1=0.6176 British pounds)

Reporting by Sarah Young; Editing by Greg Mahlich

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