Trainline expects ticket transactions on its platform will be towards the top end of annual forecasts following a robust first-half performance.
Britain’s largest online ticketing app forecasts net ticket sales will rise by 17 to 22 per cent in the current financial year, having previously guided for as low as 13 per cent.
Revenues are also anticipated to grow by 15 to 20 per cent, while adjusted earnings before nasties are expected to be between 2.15 and 2.25 per cent of ticket sales.
Forecast: Trainline predicts its net ticket sales will rise by 17 to 22 per cent this financial year
The London-based company has continued to benefit from the resurgence in rail travel amid an absence of Covid-related restrictions and people buying more tickets online, especially in the UK.
Domestic consumer ticket purchases rose by around a fifth to £1.71billion for the six months ending August, even though numerous strike action days by railway workers caused millions in lost sales.
Outside the UK, ticket sales jumped by over £100million to £558million, which Trainline partly credited to brand campaigns driving up demand in Spain and Italy.
Spanish trading was also supported by the recent liberalisation of its high-speed rail network, the second-largest in the world after China.
By contrast, the company said trading in France was slowed by the decision to pause marketing ahead of the country’s liberalisation of its railways.
The European Union has spearheaded the move towards relaxing state control of rail lines in Europe as part of its Fourth Railway Package, which aims to reduce public subsidies and enhance competitiveness in the rail industry.
Trainline said growing carrier competition puts it in a good position to become the ‘aggregator of choice’ and boost its global business over the medium term.
It noted that rail passenger numbers had ‘almost fully recovered’ to pre-pandemic volumes across the company’s core markets despite industrial action in Britain and widespread economic uncertainty.
Jody Ford, chief executive of Trainline, said: ‘Our growth over the last six months reflects our focus on continually innovating and improving the customer experience of purchasing digital rail tickets.’
Following the half-year trading update, Trainline shares jumped 10.1 per cent to 289.2p by early Thursday afternoon, making them one of the top five risers on the FTSE 250 Index.
Dominic Richardson, rail partner at Gowling WLG, said the group’s ‘technology focus means it can benefit from more tickets being booked through its app as consumers move away from paper tickets.
‘But, there is strong competition emerging in this area looking to take advantage of the sector’s failings, so Trainline will need to establish itself as the industry leader to continue reaping the rewards.’